Hand washing is still the best way to prevent catching the common cold. Zinc helps children and adults from coming down with a cold. Probiotics may also be helpful is warding off the common cold.
Vitamin C nor echinacea help prevent a cold.
What helps if you do become sick? Medications like ibuprofen and acetaminophen help relieve the aches and pains, but they will not make the cold go away any quicker.
Colds are caused by a virus so taking antibiotics is not recommended. Cold symptoms usually go away in about 7 to 10 days. If you aren't getting relief by then, see your doctors, it may be more than a cold.