Community Blog

What You Can Do to Help Your Parent Cope with the Symptoms of a Cold

By Vicki and Brian Day

Elder Care in Orefield PA

There is a reason that the common cold is called “common”. This is because each year throughout the United States there are millions of cases of the cold across all age groups, with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimating that the average adult experiences 2 to 3 colds each year. Simply because it is so common, however, does not mean that it is not unpleasant. A cold can be truly miserable and helping your parent to cope with the symptoms of the cold can help them to get through the sickness more quickly, get more rest, and be able to get back to their life sooner.

Use these tips to help your parent cope with the symptoms of a cold:

• Eat a healthy diet. Eating a healthy, balanced diet is a fantastic way to encourage your parent to stay healthy and resist illness and infection, but it is also a way to help them get through sickness as well. Giving their body the nutrition that it needs to thrive will help your parent function better, fight off the infection, and regain their normal quality of life more quickly.

• Get plenty of rest. Encourage your loved one to get plenty of rest throughout their recovery. Sleep is when the body heals and fights, so giving them as much rest as they possibly can get will help them to fight their infection more effectively.

• Consume hot fluids. Encourage your parent to enjoy hot tea, coffee, broth, and soup as they are recovering. These can be soothing to a scratchy or painful throat, loosen congestion, and will help your loved one get more hydration into their body. If they are coughing, try adding honey and lemon to the tea as this will help to not only soothe the throat but also remove damaged tissue and phlegm.

• Add humidity. Adding humidity to the air in the home with a humidifier is a fantastic way to soothe their throat and nasal passages. If using a room humidifier, be sure that it is properly cleaned after each use to prevent the growth of mold, mildew, fungus, and bacteria that could worsen your parent’s health concerns and put them at risk of further infections and illness.

As you enter cold and flu season with your aging loved one, one of the best ways that you can protect them and help them to live a healthier quality of life is to start elder care for them. The personalized assistance and care of an elderly home care services provider can help them to make better lifestyle decisions that can keep them healthier, stronger, and more active as they age in place. When it comes to helping your parent get through a cold this can include assisting with household tasks so that your parent has more of a chance to rest, aiding in meal preparation to give them the nutrition that they need to recover, and then encouraging them to get back to their active, engaged lifestyle as soon as possible so that they do not experience negative consequences associated with inactivity.