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A Sigh of Relief: Putting Your Cold to Bed

Catching some Zs when you’re stuffy can be tricky, but taking a decongestant may actually keep you awake. Here are five quick tips that may help you breathe better when you’re sick:

Hot shower

Relaxing with a hot shower before bed not only soothes achy muscles, but the steam also may help clear and soothe the sinuses.

Hot drink

A hot liquid like herbal tea helps decongest and soothe the nose and throat. If you like a hot toddy, limit yourself to just one to help avoid counterproductive effects like dehydration and inflammation.

Hot pack

Applying a hot pack around your sinuses may also help relieve congestion. Make your own by heating a damp cloth in the microwave for 30 seconds.

Head(board) up

Propping your head up on pillows isn’t advised because it can make your neck bend unnaturally, making breathing more difficult. Instead, try elevating the head of your bed using large books or planks. 


Moist air from a humidifier can ease congestion and soothe nose and throat irritation through the night; just be sure to sanitize your machine between uses.