Don’t take antibiotics for colds

Don’t take antibiotics for colds

The beginning of the school year and the return from vacations, windows closed due to the autumn coolness, cramped transport – all this contributes to the spread of viral infections. It is known that the best way to prevent influenza is vaccination, and for the optimal functioning of the immune system, you need to eat varied and balanced and move more. If SARS, including influenza, has already begun, it cannot be cured – you can only watch how the body copes itself. But this does not mean that you cannot alleviate your own condition during a cold and reduce the risk of complications. We tell you how to do it.

Have a rest

Regular activity helps to reduce the risk of a cold, but if you are already sick, trying to transfer ARVI “on your feet” will not help you recover faster. If the temperature is elevated, you do not need to increase it further by playing sports – this will only harm the body. Back in the nineties, it was discovered that training during the flu can lead to the development of chronic fatigue syndrome, a serious illness that you have to deal with over the years. The best way to help your body recover is through peace and sleep, so take a couple of weekends and rest. When the temperature and well-being normalize, a residual runny nose or cough should not be an obstacle to physical activity, and a quick walk or light workout will benefit.


Contrary to a common myth, cool air will not aggravate a cold – and if you are cold, get warmer or put on a blanket. You need to open the windows as often as possible so that the air in the apartment does not stagnate; it is the lack of air exchange in poorly ventilated rooms that leads to the fact that many fall ill with viral infections in the fall. One of the methods of combating epidemics and pandemics of influenza is the arrangement of hospital wards in the fresh air, in such hospitals more employees and patients managed to escape from the infection.


Humid air helps to cope with stuffy nose and relieve discomfort in the eyes. It is not necessary to breathe hot steam – just turn on the humidifier, if there is one, put a wet towel on the battery, or just sit in the shower for a few minutes (gadgets that are unstable to moisture should not be taken with you, so close your eyes and meditate). Viruses spread worse in humid air – perhaps one of the reasons for reducing the frequency of colds in the summer is precisely in high humidity.

Drink it

When the temperature rises, the body loses moisture, and in a situation of threat of dehydration, it is more difficult to recover from a viral infection. Drink any non-alcoholic liquids: water, tea, coffee, fruit drinks or kefir. It is believed that warm drinks like tea or chicken broth help to cope with the obstruction of the respiratory tract – and the latter will also serve as a source of energy, if there is absolutely no appetite and strength. Recall that the average recommended volume is 2.7 liters per day for women and 3.7 liters for men, including liquid in drinks and foods.

Don’t be afraid of the cold

Cold drinks and foods will not make a cold worse, but ice cream can relieve a sore throat. Again, it is quite nutritious, but it is easily digestible and does not require preparation – you do not even need to get a plate; just ask someone to go to the store or order delivery. It is better to choose soft ice cream (or frozen yogurt), without pieces of chocolate or nuts that can scratch your irritated throat. Another throat pain reliever is pieces of ice.

Take anti-inflammatory

From taking medication, the flu will not pass faster, but will become more tolerable. Antibiotics lower the temperature, relieve headache and muscle pain, and fight inflammation. Most drugs in tablets or sachets, which are positioned as a means to treat colds, actually contain these anti-inflammatory drugs in combination with the components for congestion or coughing. These drugs (according to indications and a short course) are safe even during pregnancy.

Treat symptoms

The fact that a viral infection is not treated does not mean that you need to completely abandon the medicine. The common cold is just the case when it is possible and necessary to treat not a disease, but its manifestations. Discomfort from pain or sore throat can be reduced by rinsing. With a runny nose, vasoconstrictor drops will help (only use them strictly according to the instructions) or simply moisturizing the mucous with saline. For body aches or weaknesses, it is best to take an ibuprofen pill and sleep well, and if you are cold, dress warmly.

Don’t get involved in traditional medicine

Mustard plasters and cans, rubbing with alcohol-containing liquids to lower the temperature or inhalation over a hot pan – although these methods bring a certain effect, it is not comparable with their danger. It is possible to lower a child’s body temperature with a warm or cool shower, without exposing him to the risk of poisoning with vinegar or alcohol. Steam to moisten the mucous membranes should not be hot, and alternative methods only increase the likelihood of a serious burn.

Don’t take antibiotics

Just repeat it again: antibiotics for a viral infection are useless. Neither the duration of the common cold, nor the color of the discharge from the nose says that the infection has become bacterial. Prescribe antibiotics “just in case” you also should not. At least a third of antibiotic prescriptions in recent years in the United States has been superfluous, given the currently practiced unproven approaches, self-medication and the availability of over-the-counter drugs.

Don’t spread the infection

Several days of bed rest will benefit not only you, but also others – it is better not to appear at work, in public transport or in stores. Ventilate more often, wash your hands, and use disposable handkerchiefs. If you do not have time to get a napkin, sneeze not in the palm of your hand, but in the bend of the elbow – otherwise the microorganisms from the palm will spread through the door handles or other objects. Wear a mask if you get sick – it will help not spread the infection.

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