When you’re sick, all you want is to feel better. It may take a while for your body to fight off what ails you, but relief from your aches and fever can come sooner.
You can treat many common symptoms of colds, the flu, and sinus infections with over-the-counter medications and some simple self-care.
Acetaminophen. Drugs with this ingredient affect the areas of your brain that control body temperature and pain. These medications can fight fevers and chills, ease headaches, and soothe sore throats and body aches.
Check with your doctor before taking acetaminophen if you have severe kidney or liver disease, or if you drink three or more alcoholic beverages a day.
Many multi-symptom cold medicines contain acetaminophen. Check the labels of any products you’re taking to make sure you’re not overdosing.
NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs). This group of meds includes aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen. Each is different, but they all reduce fevers and pain. NSAIDs may work better than acetaminophen at lowering a fever. They may do a better job of relieving sinus pain, too, since they reduce swelling.