Tags: Allergies | Cold/Flu | cold | allergy | remedies | prescription

Which Cold, Allergy Remedies Are Best?

By    |   Thursday, 30 April 2015 10:23 AM

Question: What are the best over-the-counter treatments for a cold or allergies?

Dr. Hibberd's answer:

I am sorry to report this, but most cold and allergy remedies treat symptoms only. They can make you comfortable and include vaporizers and nasal saline mist to help dry up a runny nose, Sudafed for nasal congestion relief, and Tylenol for headaches and pains.

Avoid using cough suppressants regularly. Sometimes an inhaled bronchodilator such as Albuterol opens up a swollen airway enough to relieve cough without having to resort to the drowsiness and side effects of cough suppressant use. Cough suppressants hinder the clearing of secretions in the lungs, may prolong the recovery and be dangerous for those with pre-existing lung disorders.

No antivirals work with the common cold, and cortisone preparations are immune suppressive and are generally discouraged, as they may increase the duration and incidence of complications of the common cold.

There may be some wisdom in boosting vitamin C intake during an illness. Taking a 500-milligram tablet three times a day for seven to 10 days may shorten illness, and the earlier it is started the better.

Many over-the-counter agents touted for colds and allergies are ineffective for most people, and will simply serve to empty your wallet.

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Most non-prescription cold and allergy remedies treat symptoms only.
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Thursday, 30 April 2015 10:23 AM
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