How to Beat Nasal Head Colds With Garden Plants

Poor you. You have a cold, and, bad situation made worse, you can't get to a chemist, pharmacy or good supermarket to buy any cold remedy, nor, do you have any cold treatments in your medicine cupboard....what to do....Head out into the garden! Depending on where you live, and the type of cold you have decided you've got, you can treat your symptoms. Read on for exactly how to beat a nasal head cold with garden plants.


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    See your doctor. There is no substitute for a doctor's advice. Your general practitioner will be happy to see you with a common cold, if you pay them! If you want to waste money going to the doctor for a nasal head cold, do it. If you want to waste the time of a National Health medical professional, you can go to your GP too. You may prefer to go to a chemist or pharmacy, especially as nothing but time can cure your cold! All that can be done is lessen the symptoms. You don't need a doctor to tell you to keep up your fluid intake, take decongestants if you find them helpful and use appropriate pain killers if you feel the need. Of course, as a doctor about this if you find that you do require professional advice.
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    Ventilate. As well as using garden plants, you can try fresh air circulation. It gives your body less chance to re-contaminate itself and continue the infection from bacteria suspended in the water particles blown out when you exhale. Change your sheets every couple days, if you feel up to it.
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    Take ibuprofen for pain if you have any from swelling from the infection. Don't be afraid to absolutely max out on the advised amount on the side of the box. If your pain is not alleviated with the maximum dose suggested on the packaging, the pain is not "minor" and a doctor should be consulted, but you can supplement with acetaminophen or aspirin. If you don't choose to take ibuprofen, you can substitute with naproxen, but don't combine naproxen with ibuprofen. It is both more expensive and less effective. If you are taking any of these, alcohol can not be used for a topical analgesia.
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    Treat the symptoms with everything you got. Don't just stick to herbs, unless you are doing this for religious experience. Diphenhydramine is an OTC antihistamine that can also be used for head colds, and produces marked drowsiness. Effective (also) to help you sleep, especially where pain interrupts. It is not excessively expensive. Other antihistamines may help (read the label and decide if so), but again cost money. Guaifenesin and DMX are common medicines, the primary ones in many OTC symptom relief medicines, however they are minimally effective for acute head colds, especially at OTC dosage levels.
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    Drink lots of chamomile and menthol tea. Take showers often. Hot, moist air is itself good for nasal infections. Menthol will help clear the nasal passages, and stimulates nerves, producing an numbing effect like the "icy-hot" patches that athletes use (although nowhere near that strong when drinking a simple tea). Chamomile has a topical analgesic effect from glycine, and both plants (and in fact almost all plants) have some antibacterial effect. These numbing effects can be seen to have a further anti-septic effect in that the numbed tissue will produce less mucus to carry and spread the disease within your body.
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    When you feel like it, opt to block your nose rather than blowing it. Blowing your nose and wiping it rubs the skin raw, which inflames the surrounding tissue and causes further mucus production. If you feel like throwing up from all the "post-nasal drip" (and/or guaifenesin), you might try gently and patiently wetting the tissues before wiping your nose with them. The amount of water needed depends on the tissue, and sufficiently but not overly wetting tissues is a subtle science that by the time you have mastered you will want to give seminars on its nuances, although the only people who are likely to listen are the few in the back of the crowd who look on with awe and remembrance of their recent head cold.
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    Use sage. You can drink sage tea but a simpler/arguably more effective remedy exists for nasal infections. When you can breathe through your nose, take a fresh, clean leaf of sage, roll it once or twice, and insert stem-side-first a little into your nose, on the side more infected. Breathe in through it and out through your mouth for ~5-15 minutes. Do this 3-4 times per day (after showers or tea is sometimes best for being able to breathe). You can also crumple the leaf and use it to stop up your nose when you want one nostril or the other to stop. Sage leaves have antibacterial, and antibiotic (the chemical Salvin) and antiseptic qualities and can greatly reduce recovery times.


  • if you are just looking to supplement advice of your doctor, remember to discuss it with her first. Also, black elderberry (specifically the "black" elderberry variety) extract has been clinically proven to reduce recovery times in half for over 90% of patients, and is the only such treatment method with numbers that good. It is delicious, and also very expensive, and potentially difficult to grow at home and process into the extract in meaningful quantities.
  • the goal here is to try to sterilize and keep everything clean and antiseptic. antibacterial (lemon essence, cinnamon, etc) agents are just fine but they may be too late. colds are stopped with antiseptics and prevented with antibacterials/antibiotics. (and, if your body is losing the war so to speak, a cold may be stopped with antibiotics [penicillin, the salvin in sage] and things that may boost your immune system [see zinc, one of the first comments in the discussion page])
  • menthol + chamomile tastes just fine, perhaps with a bit of sugar. menthol + lemon verbana + green tea tastes absolutely wonderful, and can be enjoyed even when not sick.
  • keeping the sage indoors can offer leaves for longer in the year, especially in more northern climates. In the experience of some the sage must be fresh, especially to be used in the roll-up method described, as dry sage will simply crack, and will have little liquid to suspend the molecules and aerate them upon activation from body heat into the nose.
  • Another good year-round plant to keep are aloe (for dry skin), especially as it is so easy to keep. If you have trouble imagining keeping plants alive indoors, start with something easy.


  • This is not medical advice, nor offered as a substitute for medical advice. Seek medical advice when you feel ill.

Things You'll Need

  • sage. salvia officinalis 'Berggarten' is best, as it will rarely bloom and can therefore be harvested as long as it is active.
  • chamomile in your garden, that you harvested within the past year or two, clipped the buds and separated (disposed of the stems), dried, and stored with your teas.
  • menthol - so called 'wholly mint' and the variegated 'apple mint' make a great tea.

Article Info

Categories: Alternative Health