There are many old wives’ tales passed down through the generations that plenty of people swear cure them of their ailments.
But just how scientifically accurate is the hair of the dog for a hangover, or urinating on a jellyfish sting to ease the pain?
Two thousand people were surveyed to find out if they had tried popular cures and whether or not they actually worked for them.
Pharmacists at PharmacyOutlet.co.uk have debunked the most bizarre health remedies that many of us believe to be true, proving that most of them don’t actually work.
However, these is some truth behind the legends, including the surprising cure for earwax and relief for a sore throat.
Below FEMAIL sorts the old wives tales from the advice that will genuinely make you feel better…
There is no evidence that sleeping with an onion in your sock will help prevent a cold
ONION IN A SOCK – COLD CURE
One bizarre theory to prevent a cold is putting an onion in a sock and going to sleep wearing it.
Just 8% per cent of the people surveyed by PharmacyOutlet have tried this, with 51% of those being believing it actually worked.
But the site revealed that there is no scientific evidence that suggests that this will help combat a cold.
GARGLING WITH SALT WATER – SORE THROAT REMEDY
Gargling saltwater was the most popular trick used by the participants, with 56% of them trying it out and 68% of those claiming it helped with their sore throats.
While it isn’t a miracle cure, the website said this does work to an extent as it provides pain relief and pulls fluid out of tissues in the throat.
Gargling salt water won’t cure your sore throat but it will help ease the pain of it
HOT BATH – CURE A COLD
47 per cent of the participants have tried running a hot bath or wrapping up very warm or having a hot bath in a bid to sweat out a bad cold, with 60 per cent claiming it worked for them.
However, the website said while it might make you feel comfortable when you’re battling a cold it won’t end it any sooner.
NIGHT CAP – TO HELP SLEEP
Many people take a nightcap before they go to bed in the belief that it will help fall asleep, with 44 per cent of adults having tried this.
A whopping 60 per cent of people claimed it helped them nod off, but the experts say alcohol will harm the quality of the sleep, so it cancels out its initial benefits.
HAIR OF THE DOG – HANGOVER CURE
It is popular belief that a drop of alcohol the morning after the night before will rid you of the hangover from hell, with 36 per cent of people trying it out and 46 per cent of those claimed it worked.
However, hair of the dog only delays getting the symptoms of a hangover and can actually make them worse.
Some men have tried putting turmeric on the head to prevent baldness but there is no scientific evidence that this helps
OLIVE OIL – FOR EARACHE OR WAX
33 per cent of people have tried putting olive oil in their ears to get rid of earache or earwax, and 70 per cent of those claimed it worked.
Expert said this method does actually work, and recommend using three drops of olive oil to get rid of earwax.
CARROTS – NIGHT VISION
A theory popular with parents everywhere states that eating all your carrots can improve your eyesight, with 32 per cent of people trying this and 25 per cent of those claiming it worked for them.
But the experts says that they will not have an impact on your eyesight, and will only help if you are seriously deficient beta-carotene, which carrots are rich in.
SEAWATER – HEAL CUTS
21 per cent of the people surveyed claimed putting seawater into cuts helps them heal faster, with 80 per cent of those claiming it helped.
The experts say seawater contains bacteria and is not sterile, but pure saltwater will help because it’s sterile.
Urinating on someone who has been stung by a jellyfish won’t actually help despite popular belief
BUTTER – BURNS RELIEF
Some 19 per cent of people have tried putting butter on a burn to ease the pain, and 48 per cent of those said it helped.
The website says this is inadvisable as it can actually make the burn worse because it slows the release of heat from the skin.
LEMON JUICE – INSECT BITES
A lesser known cure is putting lemon juice on an insect bite to cure the itchiness, with 14 per cent of participants trying this and 63 per cent getting good results.
Experts say this does actually work as a short term measure as the citric acid cleans the bite.
URINE – JELLYFISH STING
Somewhat unsurprisingly just eight per cent of people have urinated on someone to ease the pain of a jellyfish sting but 57 per cent of those said it helped.
Unfortunately they could have saved themselves the trouble as experts say there is little evidence to suggest this helps, and suggest the much more pleasant option of vinegar instead.
TURMERIC POWDER – BALDNESS
Just seven per cent of the men surveyed have tried rubbing turmeric powder on their heads to prevent baldness and 41 per cent of those claimed it helped.
But experts say there is no evidence to suggest this works, and it can actually cause itching to the scalp instead.