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Sunday, April 21, 2013


Assalamualaikum readers

The common cold is an upper respiratory tract infection, affecting the nasal passages and throat that is caused by a virus.  There are over 200 cold viruses.  The type of virus may be different each season.  Antibiotics do not destroy the viruses.  The infection is self-limiting and subsides after few days, unless secondary infection sets in.  Antibiotics may be required only if secondary infection is present.  A cold is easily spread by air when a person talks, coughs or sneezes or by direct contact.  Children who have lower immunity than adults get more frequent colds i.e. about 6-12 times a year, whereas adults, about twice a year.


These may be the first symptoms experienced.
v Dry and sore throat
v Watery discharge which thickens later.
v Sneezing.
v Blocked nose. This causes difficulty in feeding in babies.
v Headache.
v Mild fever, sometimes.
v Body aches.
v Watering of the eyes.


v No serious complications occur with a rhinovirus infection However, a simple cold could be
    come something more serious when secondary infections by bacteria sets in-
v Bronchitis – infection of the air passages causing inflammation.
v Laryngitis – inflammation of the larynx or vocal chords.
v Otitis Media – inflammation of the middle ear and this is more common in children.
v Sinusitis – Infection spreads to the sinuses.
v Pneumonia – Infection spreads downwards and into the lungs.
v Secondary bacterial infection.
v Existing respiratory diseases can be triggered or affected. e.g. asthma.

People whose immune system is low have more chances of getting a cold and also complications can set in.
Those who are more at risk are: -
The undernourished.
The elderly
The very young.

Consult a doctor if

v A simple cold persists for more than a week, accompanied by a fever of more than 38°C or
    a persisting low-grade fever.
v Chest pain sets in.
v There is difficulty in breathing.
v There is yellow coloured phlegm.

Self management

There is no specific treatment but symptomatic treatment may be carried out as they occur.
Among the things that one can do are: –
Rest Symptomatic treatment, such as with analgesics, antipyretics and antihistamines, can be carried out with medicines that can be bought over the counter, after consulting with the pharmacist. Drink lots of fluids, both water and juice. Inhalations.


v Smoking
v Coughing and sneezing in close proximity with people, especially babies and over food.
v Blowing your nose forcibly with both nostrils closed as this can force infection into the
    middle ear.
v Driving after taking certain medications for cough and cold.
v Medication containing salicylates e.g. aspirin.

Good Habits

Dress sensibly according to the surrounding temperature, so that chills and overheating can be avoided.
v Have adequate sleep.
v Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when sneezing.
v Wash hands thoroughly before cooking, eating or handling food.
v Blow your nose, when necessary, with one or both nostrils open.
v When self-medicating, know what the medicines are and its claimed effect.
v Consult your pharmacist if in doubt.
v Read instruction carefully before taking any medication.

Practice a healthy life style. Eat balanced meals. Exercise regularly. =)

Hope sooner, I'll recover from common cold. Hrmmm

SOURCE: efarmasi - selfcare , GS Vision Sdn Bhd, Malaysia

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