Cure for the Common Cold
The common cold cannot be cured, despite the marketing claims of various products. Zinc and vitamin C have been put forward as possible cures; the research, however, does not support this. Likewise, echinacea has been touted as a cure; this is also untrue. Because there are so many viruses that can cause the common cold, it will likely be some time before a cure is discovered.
Is There a Cure for the Common Cold?
Every day, it seems as though a new "cure for the common cold" is being marketed. Despite these claims, there is only one cure -- time. Therefore, current common cold treatment goals are focused on providing relief of symptoms as the body fights the virus.
The Effects of Zinc and Vitamin C
Both zinc and vitamin C have been touted as cures for the common cold. Research, however, does not support these claims.
(Click Vitamin C and the Common Cold or Zinc and the Common Cold for more information about these supplements.)
The Effect of Echinacea
Echinacea used to be praised as a common cold cure. It appears, however, that this is a myth. Researchers have found that while the herb may help treat common cold symptoms if taken in the early stages of the illness, it will not help prevent colds. One large research study found that echinacea is not effective at all in treating children ages 2 to 11.
Research on a Common Cold Cure
Doctors and scientists studying the common cold have been examining medications and possible vaccines, trying to find a cure. To date, however, they have not been successful. One of the challenges for these scientists is that more than 200 viruses are responsible for the common cold (see Causes of Common Cold). A cure for the common cold will continue to be an active area of research. In the meantime, there are steps you can take to reduce your chances of catching a cold virus.
(Click Common Cold Prevention for more information.)