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Flu, common cold treatment

Common cold is an illness typically well treatable at home. Since common cold is caused by viruses, the provoking factor can’t be eliminated (antiviral agents are not recommended for common cold), however, symptoms are well manageable.

Several prescription-free agents are available, though according to many opinions fever reduction under 38-38.5 C degree values is unnecessary, since it even has a protective function, playing a role in pathogen eradication. Anyways, high fever has to be ameliorated.

It is important to keep respiratory tracts unobstructed using a nasal spray. It matters however, which type we decide to use. The nasal spray containing steroids leftover from the summer allergy season can’t be administered for common cold, mucosa-deflating nose-drops should be used for this reason. It’s important to use them for less than two weeks, because it can cause nose-drop dependence.

In cases of upper and lower respiratory tract inflammation dissolving mucus is equally important, several prescription-free agents are available for this task. There is something we shouldn’t be forgetting though: even the best expectorant will be ineffective, if we don’t drink enough fluid! Rose-hip, chamomile and elder tea may be consumed in unlimited amounts. (Considering its local anti-inflammatory effect it is recommended to drink it with honey) Primula, horehound, eucalyptus, anise, thyme among others have expectorating effects. Several utilization methods are available, thus each and everyone may choose the natural expectorant according to their personal taste.

In cases of chronic coughing it is rather recommended to sooth irritation using a cough-relieving medication or even with Icelandic lichen extract. In cases of rough, dry, torturing cough anti-allergic agents (cetirizine, etc.) are beneficial, which also are prescription-free.

Don’t forget about vitamin C either in common cold.

Additionally

a warm surrounding and rest is beneficial. Infection risk shall also be decreased by thorough hand-washing, sneezing into a handkerchief or the crook of the arm, and by avoiding communities with a sick child! It is a misconception, that common cold is not contagious, because it is caused by cold weather.

When is a doctor’s appointment still needed?

If complaints worsen, high fever occurs or frontal-, ear-, facial-pain, or chest pain is felt while coughing, or the nasal excretion turns thick, greenish, you should see a physician. In such cases it is likely, that a bacterial infection has superimposed on the original viral infection. The specialist will choose the right antibiotic in addition to the symptomatic treatment. However, the antibiotic acting on bacteria will not promote the healing of the viral infection.