Prolonged colds: Cold Symptoms: When Should You See a Doctor for a Cold?
Cold Symptoms: When Should You See a Doctor for a Cold?
If your infant is younger than 3 months old and has a fever of 100 F (37.8 C) or higher, go to the doctor immediately, says pediatrician Carlos Lerner, MD, medical director for children’s health at Mattel Children’s Hospital at University of California, Los Angeles. When in doubt, Dr. Lerner advises parents to give their doctor a call: “It’s worth getting some advice over the phone,” he says.
Serious Complications of the Common Cold
Colds can wear down your body’s natural defenses, leaving you vulnerable to health issues ranging from ear and sinus infections to strep throat, bronchitis, and pneumonia. Headaches, fever, and sinus pain could point to a sinus infection that requires treatment.
“Certainly if you’ve had a cold or sinus infection and now you’ve got a worsening headache and a fever, that needs to be seen,” says David Ross, MD, an emergency medicine physician at Penrose-St. Francis Health Services in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
If you have symptoms such as stabbing pains in the chest, a cough that brings up colored sputum, fever, or shortness of breath you may have pneumonia and should see your doctor. If symptoms came on fast, you should seek immediate medical care, Dr. Ross says.
Respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV, is a common respiratory virus that shares symptoms with the common cold but can cause severe symptoms in infants, young children, and older adults. While most people recover from RSV infection in one to two weeks, the virus is the most common cause of bronchiolitis (inflammation of the small airways in the lung) and pneumonia in U.S. children under 12 months of age.
Signs of breathing difficulties in infants include flaring nostrils, breathing faster than usual, straining muscles in the neck, or bluish discoloration around the lips and on fingers. “If you see those things, bring them to the emergency room right away,” Ross says.
Checklists of Cold Symptoms to Watch For
Of course, most colds will never require an emergency room visit. But if the signs and symptom are looking questionable, it’s worth a trip.
According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, here are some red flags to look for.
- High fever (above 103 F), or a fever that lasts more than 3 days
- Symptoms that last more than 10 days
- Trouble breathing, fast breathing, or wheezing
- Bluish skin color
- Earache or drainage from the ear
- Changes in mental state (such as not waking up, irritability, or seizures)
- Flu-like symptoms that improve, but return with a fever and a worse cough
- Worsening of chronic medical condition
- A high, prolonged fever (above 102 F)
- Symptoms that last for more than 10 days or get worse instead of better
- Trouble breathing or shortness of breath
- Pain or pressure in the chest
- Fainting or feeling like you are about to faint
- Confusion or disorientation
- Severe or persistent vomiting
- Severe pain in your face or forehead
- Hoarseness, sore throat, or a cough that won’t go away after 10 days
The Reasons Why You Could Be Getting Frequent Colds
- On average, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, adults get about two to three colds each year.
- Stress and lack of sleep can increase your risk of getting frequent colds.
- Practicing good hygiene, eating right, sleeping, and reducing stress all help keep colds away.
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Runny nose, sore throat, cough, congestion, sneezing, and just feeling awful are all signs that you might have a cold. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), adults on average have about two to three colds each year. When you consider that the average cold lasts seven to 10 days, that’s 18 to 20 days out of 365 each year.
Although that may not seem like much, the common cold can be debilitating — especially if you’re one of the many people who get several colds a year. From missed work days and reduced productivity to a decline in your ability to participate in daily activities, it’s important to pinpoint the reason you’re getting frequent colds.
INSIDER asked four doctors to share their thoughts on why you might be getting the sniffles more often than you should.
You’re a smoker
One reason you may find yourself catching colds frequently is because of smoking. Cedrina Calder, preventive medicine doctor and health expert told INSIDER that the chemicals found in cigarette smoke have been found to alter the immune system’s natural response by weakening it.
“It directly affects the cells of the immune system which causes you to become more likely to catch frequent colds,” she explained.
Additionally, Calder said that smoking temporarily damages the tiny little hairs of the respiratory tract that normally help to clear out mucus and debris which carry germs.
“By damaging these hairs, it puts you at a greater risk of getting respiratory infections like the common cold,” added Calder.
To prevent frequent colds, she said the best solution is to stop smoking altogether. Speak to your doctor about quitting smoking and your options for helping to break the habit.
Your hygiene is lacking
It’s best to wash your hands after being in public places.
Smith Collection/Gado / Contributor
Are you an avid hand-washer or do you only scrub in the shower? If you’re slacking on your hygiene, don’t be surprised if you find yourself with the sniffles on a regular basis.
“When you don’t stick to strong hand hygiene practices, you are creating an environment that sets the stage up for recurrent infections like a cold,” said Dr. Nesochi Okeke-Igbokwe, physician and health expert. That’s because viral particles caused by the common cold may spread easily, especially when you ignore your hand hygiene.
Read more: You’re probably washing your hands wrong and the results can be pretty gross — here’s the right way
You’re stressed out
According to Calder, stress can weaken the immune system’s ability to fight infection by decreasing the number of immune cells and blunting the immune system’s response to infection.
To reduce the number of colds you’re getting, Calder recommended addressing some of the stressors that you have in your life. You might also want to consider stress-reducing practices like yoga, meditation, or mindfulness techniques to help cope with stress.
Read more: 6 little things you can do every day to feel less stressed
You’re sleep deprived
Poor sleep habits can lead to a weakened immune system.
Mita Stock Images/Shutterstock
Do you wake up rested and ready to face the day or do you play the snooze game with your alarm? If you’re not getting the recommended seven to nine hours of sleep each night, you might be increasing the odds that you’ll end up sick.
“The effect of sleep deprivation goes beyond simply feeling chronically tired and lethargic,” Dr. Nesochi Okeke-Igbokwe told INSIDER.
“Lack of sleep is linked to a weaker immune system and heightened susceptibility to the common cold,” she added. That’s why she said to work on cultivating strong sleep habits to get quality sleep every night.
You’re not eating healthy foods
If you’re eating unhealthy foods, Dr. Frank Lipman told INSIDER that your immune system is probably lower than ideal and you’re likely picking up bugs easily.
To counter this, Lipman said to avoid sugar and processed foods, both of which might decrease immune function. And instead, he recommended loading up on nutrient-rich whole foods, like well-sourced organic, grass-fed and finished animal protein, nourishing soups, colorful salads, and green-leafy veggies which are packed with flu-fighting phytonutrients.
You’re spending more time indoors
Germs are easily spread indoors.
Flickr / Tech Hub
If you’re spending more time indoors due to the bitter cold or you just find yourself inside more than usual, you might be experiencing frequent colds, according to Jason Abramowitz, MD at ENT & Allergy Associates.
“During the colder months, people are indoors more, which leads to more indoor contact and spreading of germs,” he explained. Abramowitz also said that colder temperatures can slow down the immune system, which makes it easier to get sick.
Plus, being inside means more exposure to dust, and Abramowitz said this can trigger allergies, which can often feel like the common cold.
You have a weakened immune system
If you have a weakened immune system, you’re at a higher risk of developing health problems such as the common cold. In addition to recurrent pneumonia, bronchitis, and sinus infections, frequent colds are also common if your immune system is compromised.
Coughs and Colds in Children | Causes and Treatment
What causes coughs and colds?
Most coughs and colds are caused by germs called viruses. Many different viruses can infect the nose and throat. They are passed on by coughing and sneezing the virus into the air. An average preschool and primary school child has 3-8 coughs or colds per year. Some children will have more than this. Sometimes several coughs or colds occur one after the other. A child who lives with smokers has an increased risk of developing coughs and colds, and the colds they get may last longer.
What are the symptoms?
- The common symptoms are a cough and a runny nose. The cough is often worse at night. Coughing does not damage the lungs.
- In addition, a child may have a raised temperature (fever), a sore throat, headache, and tiredness; they may be off their food. Sometimes children may be sick (vomit) after a bout of coughing.
- A build-up of mucus behind the eardrums may cause dulled hearing or mild earache.
- Very young children often sleep a lot when they are unwell.
What are the treatments for coughs and colds?
There is no magic cure! Typically, symptoms are worse in the first 2-3 days, and then ease over the next few days as the immune system clears the virus. An irritating cough may linger for up to 2-4 weeks after other symptoms have gone. Antibiotics do not kill viruses, so are of no use for common coughs and colds.
Coughs and colds often do not need any treatment.
Make sure your child has enough to drink. Low body fluid (dehydration) may develop if a child has a raised temperature (fever) and does not drink much.
Resting probably helps the body to fight off viruses more quickly.
Treatment to ease symptoms
Paracetamol can ease aches and pains, headaches and fever. Ibuprofen is an alternative. Both are sold in pharmacies in liquid form for children. There are various brands – ask the pharmacist if you are unsure what is suitable.
Saline drops for blocked nose
A popular treatment for a blocked nose in a baby is to put a few drops of salt water (saline) into the nose just before feeds. Some people feel that this helps to clear the nose to make feeding easier. There is little scientific evidence as to how well this works, but it may be worth a try if feeding is difficult. You can buy saline drops from pharmacies.
Vapour rubs are another popular treatment. They can be applied to the chest and back. Avoid application directly to the nostril area. Again, there is little scientific evidence as to how well they work.
Inhaling steam can also help relieve congestion and coughing. The safest way to do this with children is to sit in the bathroom with a hot shower/hot taps running.
Sucking menthol or other medicated sweets can help ease irritating coughs and sore throats in older children.
What about cold and cough remedies?
Cough or cold remedies may be advertised and are sold in pharmacies. They contain various ingredients or combinations of ingredients such as paracetamol, decongestants, antihistamines and cough remedies. However, there is no convincing evidence that these cough and cold remedies work. Also, they may have side-effects such as allergic reactions, problems with sleeping or making you see or hear things that are not really there (hallucinations).
In March 2009 an important statement was issued by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA). It said that parents and carers should no longer use over-the-counter (OTC) cough and cold medicines in children aged under 6 years. For 6- to 12-year-olds these medicines continue to be available (as there is less risk of side-effects in older children). However, they are only sold in pharmacies, with clearer advice on the packaging and from the pharmacist. Note: paracetamol and ibuprofen are not classed as cough and cold medicines and can still be given to children.
A warm drink made with honey and lemon juice can be as soothing to an irritated or sore throat as cough medicine that you buy at the chemist. Please note that honey should not be given to babies under 1 year old.
Cough is a difficult symptom to control. Sometimes it seems as if your child is coughing all the time. They may cough so hard that they are sick. This is distressing but it does not necessarily indicate that they need additional treatment from a doctor.
Previous research studies suggest that a mineral called zinc appears to reduce the severity of cold symptoms in healthy children. A recent review of the research on zinc supplements and the common cold found that zinc supplements may reduce the length and severity of cold symptoms, when taken within 24 hours of the first symptoms of a cold. Zinc supplements may also help to prevent colds. However, there were possible side-effects such as unpleasant taste and feeling sick (nausea). The review concluded that it is not yet clear whether zinc should be recommended as treatment for colds. More studies need to be done to work out which dose should be taken and for how long. More details can be found under ‘Further Reading and References’ at the end of this leaflet.
There has also been research looking at vitamin C for preventing or treating colds. A recent review found that taking vitamin C regularly did not seem to prevent colds in the ordinary population. However, it did seem to reduce the length and severity of symptoms. Also, in trials where people were exposed to short periods of extreme physical stress (for example, marathon runners and skiers) vitamin C halved the risk of developing a cold. More research is needed to answer the question of whether vitamin C can help once the cold symptoms have already started.
A study published in early 2017 revealed that vitamin D is also useful for preventing colds. Many people in the UK have low levels of vitamin D during the winter, and Public Health England now recommends that everyone should consider taking a vitamin D supplement during the winter.
Echinacea (a herbal treatment) and garlic have traditionally been used for treating colds. However, recent reviews of research could not find any evidence that either is helpful. The MHRA also advises that echinacea should not be given to children under 12 years old. This is because of rare allergic reactions, which can be severe.
Black elderberry extract is another natural remedy that has been used traditionally. There is some evidence that it can help to prevent and shorten colds.
What symptoms should I look out for?
Most coughs and colds get better without complications. Sometimes a more serious infection develops from an initial viral infection. For example, an ear infection, chest infection or pneumonia. Symptoms to look out for that may mean your child has more than just a cold include:
- Breathing problems – wheezing, fast breathing, noisy breathing or difficulty with breathing.
- Being unable to swallow (this may show up as excessive drooling).
- Unusual irritability or persistent crying, in a baby, or if the baby is not taking feeds.
- A rash.
- Chest pains.
- Persistent high temperatures, particularly if a baby aged less than 3 months has a raised temperature (fever) higher than 38°C.
- Very bad (severe) headache, sore throat, earache or swollen glands.
- A cough that persists for longer than 3-4 weeks.
- Symptoms getting worse rather than better after about five days of a cold.
- Symptoms (other than a irritating cough) lasting more than about ten days. This is particularly important if your child has mucus or phlegm (sputum) which is green, yellow or brown, as it may indicate infection with other germs called bacteria.
- Any symptom that you cannot explain.
See a doctor if any symptoms develop that you are concerned about. This is particularly important if your child has a long-term illness or medical condition – for example, chest/breathing/heart problems or neurological disease. Doctors are skilled at checking children over to rule out serious illness. They may not be able to prescribe anything more effective for a common cough or cold, but a check-over can be reassuring.
Cough Symptoms & Causes | Boston Children’s Hospital
There are several different types of coughs, including:
These coughs are usually caused by croup brought on by allergies, change in temperature at night, or most commonly a viral upper respiratory infection.
When a young child’s airway becomes inflamed, it may swell around the vocal cords, making it harder to breathe.
Children younger than 3 years of age have croup most often because their windpipes are narrow – some children have it practically every time they have a respiratory illness.
Croup can occur suddenly in the middle of the night, which can be frightening for both you and your child.
Although most cases can be managed at home, if you suspect your child has croup, call your child’s doctor to determine whether your child needs to visit him or her.
The “whooping” sound actually occurs after the cough, when the child tries to take in a deep breath after a round of several coughs in a row.
If your child makes a “whooping” noise (which actually sounds like “hoop”) after severe bouts of rapid coughing, it is most likely a symptom of pertussis (whooping cough) – particularly if your child has not received her diphtheria/tetanus/pertussis (DTaP) vaccinations.
Infants with pertussis usually do not “whoop” after the prolonged episodes of coughing, but they may not get enough oxygen or they may even stop breathing with this disease.
In infants and very young children, pertussis can be deadly, so call your child’s doctor right away.
Cough With Wheezing:
When coughing is accompanied by a wheezing sound as your child exhales (breathes out), it is a sign that something may be partially blocking the lower airway.
This might be caused by swelling from a respiratory infection (such as bronchiolitis or pneumonia), asthma, or an object stuck in her airway.
Call your child’s doctor unless your child has this problem often and you have medicine, such as an inhaler or nebulizer, with instructions on how to use the medicine for home treatment of your child’s asthma.
If the cough and wheezing do not improve with medication, call your child’s doctor.
Although wheezing usually during exhalation, stridor (pronounced: stry-door) is noisy, harsh breathing (some doctors describe it as a coarse, musical sound) that’s heard when a child inhales (breathes in).
Most often, it’s caused by swelling of the upper airway, usually from viral croup.
However, it’s sometimes caused by a more serious infection called epiglottitis or a foreign object stuck in the child’s airway.
If your child has stridor, call your child’s doctor immediately.
When a child suddenly starts coughing, it may mean she has swallowed some food or liquid “the wrong way” (into the airway) or something (a bit of food, vomit, or perhaps even a small toy or coin) is caught in her throat or airway.
Coughing helps clear the airway and may even continue for a minute or so simply because the throat or airway is irritated.
But if the coughing does not seem to improve or your child has trouble breathing, call your child’s doctor.
Do not try to clear the throat with your finger because you might push the obstruction even farther down the windpipe.
Lots of coughs get worse at night because the congestion in a child’s nose and sinuses drains down the throat and causes irritation while the child lies in bed. This is only a problem if your child is unable to sleep.
Asthma can also trigger nighttime coughs because the airways tend to be more sensitive and become more irritable at night.
Allergies, asthma, colds, and other respiratory infections are the usual culprits.
Cold air or activity can make these coughs worse, and they often subside at night or when the child is resting.
You should make sure that nothing in your house, like air freshener, pets, or smoke, is making your child cough.
Cough With a Cold:
Because most colds are accompanied by a cough, it’s perfectly normal for your child to develop either a wet or dry cough when she has a cold.
The cough usually lasts about a week, often after all other symptoms of the cold have disappeared.
Cough With a Fever:
If your child has a cough, mild fever, and runny nose, chances are she has a simple cold.
But coughs with a fever of 102 degrees Fahrenheit (39 degrees Celsius) or higher can mean pneumonia, particularly if your child is listless and breathing fast. In this case, call your child’s doctor immediately.
Cough With Vomiting:
Children often cough so much that it triggers their gag reflex, making them throw up.
Usually, this is not cause for alarm unless the vomiting persists.
Also, if your child has a cough with a cold or an asthma flare-up, she may throw up if lots of mucus drains into her stomach and causes nausea.
Coughs caused by colds can last weeks, even up to three weeks, especially if your child has one cold right after another.
Asthma, allergies, or a chronic infection in the sinuses or breathing passages might also be responsible for long-term coughs.
If your child’s cough lasts for more than a month, you should schedule a visit with your child’s doctor.
Cough in Young Infants:
Coughing can wear out babies younger than 6 months, so keep a close eye on any cough your infant develops.
These infants are also the population that is most at risk for complications from respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), which is most common in the winter. RSV causes colds and ear infections in older children and adults, but in young babies, it can cause bronchiolitis and pneumonia and lead to severe respiratory problems. The disease starts out like a normal cold but becomes worse until the child has wheezing, a cough, and difficulty breathing.
Some children may have to be admitted to the hospital to receive oxygen and fluids.
When should I call my child’s doctor?
Most childhood coughs are nothing to be concerned about. However, in some instances you should consult a doctor, just to be safe. Call your child’s doctor if your child:
has trouble breathing or is working hard to breathe
has a blue or dusky color to the lips, face, or tongue
has a high fever (particularly in a young infant or in the absence of congestion or a runny nose; contact your child’s doctor for any fever in an infant younger than 3 months of age)
is an infant (3 months old or younger) who has been coughing for more than a few hours
makes a “whooping” sound when she breathes after coughing
is coughing up blood (if your child has had a nosebleed recently, this usually is not a problem)
has stridor when inhaling
has wheezing when exhaling (unless you already have home asthma management instructions from your child’s doctor)
is listless or cranky.
Prolonged Period of Cold Weather
Prolonged Period of Cold Weather
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Decoding the Symptoms: Common Colds vs. Allergies
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It’s that time of the year again. Pollen levels around the country are rapidly increasing at the same time that some of my patients are catching cold viruses at the tail-end of winter. How can you tell if your runny nose and watery eyes are a result of allergies or a cold virus? Sometimes it’s difficult to decode the symptoms, but I have some quick tips for telling the difference between the two. I also have some treatment options that will help you make it through spring without having to buy extra tissues!
What causes respiratory allergies?
If you have allergies, you are not alone. Nearly 50 million other Americans have them, too. In fact, allergies are the fifth leading chronic, or long-term, disease in the United States, and the third most common chronic disease among children under 18-years-old.
Allergic reactions are caused by an over-reactive immune system. Sometimes the body mistakes a harmless substance (like pollen or dust) for a dangerous invader. This results in a release of chemicals from immune cells, which can cause sneezing, itchy, runny nose or eyes, rashes or hives, inflamed eyes, skin, or lungs. In severe allergic reactions, whole body reactions may require immediate medical attention.
What causes the common cold?
The common cold is caused by viruses (mainly rhinoviruses) that get into the cells lining the nose, pharynx, and bronchi. The body’s immune system reacts to these viruses in that it opens up blood vessels and increases mucus secretion. This leads to the common cold symptoms including stuffy nose, sore throat, and cough.
Types of allergies
There are six main types of allergies
- Indoor/Outdoor Allergies (allergic rhinitis or “hay fever”): Most commonly triggered by tree, grass, and weed pollen; mold spores; dust mites and cockroach allergens; and cat, dog, and rodent dander.
- Eye Allergies (allergic conjunctivitis): Most commonly caused by the same things that trigger indoor/outdoor allergies, but symptoms are specific to the eyes.
- Skin Allergies (atopic or contact dermatitis): Most commonly triggered by plants such as poison ivy, oak, and sumac. However, skin contact with cockroach and dust mite allergens, certain foods, or latex may also trigger symptoms of skin allergies. Symptoms of skin allergies include eczema or hives.
- Latex Allergies: Latex is most commonly found in hospital gloves and certain paints. Latex can react with sensitive skin or can be inhaled and cause breathing problems.
- Food and Drug Allergies: The majority of food allergies are caused by eight types of foods: milk, soy, eggs, wheat, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, and shellfish. Penicillin is the most common drug allergy, though there are many other drugs that may cause allergic reactions.
- Insect Allergies: Most commonly caused by bee and wasp stings, venomous ant bites, and cockroach and dust mites.
Colds and allergies: What’s the difference?
Many of my patients are not sure how to tell the difference between a common cold and allergies. It’s easy to get confused, since colds and allergies share some (but not all) of the same symptoms. Here’s how you can tell if your symptoms are related to a cold virus or allergies:
- Duration: Colds don’t usually last longer than 5 to 7 days, but allergies can last as long as you’re exposed to the thing you’re allergic to, the allergen.
- Onset of Symptoms: Cold viruses take about three days (from the time of infection) to cause symptoms. The sneezing, watery eyes, etc., from an allergy can happen as soon as you are in contact with the allergen.
- Allergy Symptom Characteristic: Allergies never cause a fever or body aches. The following symptoms are more common in allergy sufferers (though can sometimes be associated with colds, too): itchy, watery eyes; clear mucus that doesn’t turn yellow; and symptoms that are triggered when seasons change.
- Cold Symptom Characteristics: The following symptoms are more common in cold virus infections (though they can sometimes be associated with allergies, too): cough; sore throat; thick, yellow mucus; and winter-time onset. Unlike allergies, the common cold is often accompanied by fever and body aches.
Can I prevent myself from getting a cold?
While there is no way to guarantee that you won’t catch a cold virus, there are two ways to greatly reduce your risk:
- Hand washing and hygiene
- Avoiding contact and preventing virus spread
Can I prevent myself from getting allergy symptoms?
In terms of preventing allergic reactions, the first step is to find out what you’re allergic to. Doctors who specialize in allergy and immunology can help patients discover what might be causing their specific allergies with skin, patch, and blood tests. For example, sometimes it’s difficult to know if your allergy trigger is pollen, pets, mold spores, or a combination of different triggers. Once you have an understanding of your allergy trigger(s), it’s best to avoid contact with them as much as possible. Depending on the category of allergy that you have, you may want to try the following:
- Reduce Allergens in the Home: Frequent dusting, vacuuming, and cleaning (wear a face mask to prevent breathing in dust and dander while cleaning) can reduce allergy triggers. Dehumidifiers and air filters can be helpful in cleaning mold and pollen from the air. Keep windows and doors shut during high pollen seasons. Keep pets out of the bedroom if you’re allergic to their dander; that way you get 7-8 hours of dander-free time each night when you sleep. If dust mites are a trigger, washing your sheets in very hot water or putting them in a hot drier for at least 20 minutes can kill them. Allergen-proof bed covers and washable toys are also helpful.
- Reduce Your Exposure Time: If your allergy trigger is pollen, showering after you come indoors can help to reduce exposure time. Some people find glasses or sunglasses helpful in reducing the amount of pollen that enters the eye and facemasks can help to reduce the number of particles inhaled. Avoid walking outside during peak pollen times (10 a.m. – 4 p.m.) and keep your vehicle windows up to prevent pollen from entering into your car.
What are my treatment options for allergies?
Although allergies can be greatly reduced by avoiding your specific allergic triggers, sometimes it’s impossible to avoid them. In these cases, the following OTC allergy medications may be appropriate and helpful:
- Antihistamines: During an allergic reaction, the body releases a substance known as histamine. Histamine causes tiny blood vessels in the nose and throat to become leaky, resulting in tissue swelling and increased mucus production. Histamine may also cause constriction of the smooth muscle in the airways, and can produce asthma symptoms. Antihistamines work by preventing this histamine release. This relieves itching, sneezing, and runny nose. OTC antihistamine tablets for adults and syrups for children are available.
- Nasal Decongestants: Nasal decongestants reduce swelling in your nasal passages and make it easier to breathe. Some OTC allergy tablets combine an antihistamine with a nasal decongestant. Nasal decongestants active ingredients are available in both oral and topical medicines. Topical nasal decongestants are applied directly inside of the nose in the form of drops or sprays. Topical nasal decongestants should not be used for more than three days in a row, however, because frequent or prolonged use may cause nasal congestion to recur or get worse.
- Nasal Allergy Symptom Controllers (Mass Cell Stabilizers): Like antihistamines, nasal allergy symptom controllers (also known as mast cell stabilizers) also reduce the effects of histamine, but in a different way. Nasal allergy symptom controllers reduce how much histamine is released into the body when a person has an allergic reaction. The nasal allergy symptom controller ingredient contained in OTC allergy medicines is cromolyn sodium. Nasal allergy symptom controllers containing cromolyn sodium are applied directly inside of the nose. They are available to consumers over the counter in the form of nasal sprays.
What are my treatment options for colds?
Unfortunately, there is no cure for a cold virus once you’ve been infected. The good news is that there are many over-the-counter (OTC) medications and products that can treat your symptoms. If extra rest, drinking hot fluids, nasal irrigation, and saline gargles and washes are not enough to manage your cold symptoms, you could benefit from:
- Pain Relievers and Fever Reducers: Ibuprofen, aspirin (for adults), and acetaminophen, can be used to reduce fever and aches.
- Cough Suppressants: Cough suppressants are helpful if your cough is keeping you awake at night, or is making you uncomfortable. Dextromethorphan is the most common active ingredient in OTC cough medicines.
- Cough Expectorants: Sometimes cold viruses trigger the body to produce a large amount of thick mucus. If you feel that you are having trouble coughing out the mucus because it is too thick, guaifenesin-based medications can be helpful.
- Nasal Decongestants: The membrane in your nose can swell with a cold making it harder to breathe through your nose. Decongestants reduce this swelling. Pseudoephedrine and phenylephrine are the two most common active ingredients in OTC decongestants. There are also nasal decongestant sprays available, but they should not be used for more than three days at a time.
- Multi-Symptom Cold Medicines: Multi-symptom cold medicines often contain a combination of active ingredients to treat pain, fever, nasal and chest congestion, and cough. While these medications may provide extra convenience since they treat a variety of symptoms, it’s really important to only take medications that treat your specific symptoms and to avoid taking two medications with the same active ingredients.
Always read the Drug Facts label on all types of medications before you take them. It’s possible that some active ingredients may be in more than one medicine. Also, please note that young children (under 4 years of age) should not be given certain cough and cold medicines; check with your pediatrician before giving any medicine to young children and babies.
It’s important to work closely with your doctor to determine the best allergy management strategy, depending on your living and work environment and unique sensitivities. With careful diagnosis and treatment, most people can find a way to manage their allergies successfully. Don’t lose heart if you’re struggling with allergy symptoms – a physician can help you develop a plan to improve your situation. And if you have a cold instead of allergies – be encouraged that most cold viruses fully resolve in a week or two, and that rest, fluids, or OTC medications can help you manage your symptoms more comfortably.
Q: What medical condition did the scientist who discovered cromolyn sodium suffer from?
A: Asthma. Dr. Roger Edward Collingwood Altounyan (1922–1987) was a Syrian Armenian physician and pharmacologist who discovered cromolyn sodium (which he isolated from an Egyptian plant-based muscle relaxant) as a remedy for asthma.
Chest Cold « Conditions « Ada
What is a chest cold?
A chest cold, or acute bronchitis, is a condition affecting the bronchial tubes of the lungs, causing short-term inflammation and irritation of these airways. Common symptoms include a persistent cough, shortness of breath and fatigue.
Most often developing out of respiratory infections such as flu or a common cold, chest colds are caused – in most cases – by the same set of viruses as cause the common cold. In rare cases, a chest cold can also be caused by a bacterial infection.
Most people find that a chest cold clears up in two to three weeks, without the need for treatment. In severe cases or when the symptoms do not subside in the normal timeframe, doctors will recommend treatment options.
A chest cold is generally considered to be a non-serious condition. However, there is a risk that a chest cold will develop into pneumonia – a more serious condition. A persistent chest cold may also be diagnosed as chronic bronchitis, a long-term condition that cannot be fully cured. If you think that you may be experiencing a chest cold, a symptom assessment using the free Ada app may be able to help.
Acute bronchitis vs. chronic bronchitis
Chronic bronchitis differs from acute bronchitis by its persistent nature. Acute bronchitis, which shares the same symptoms as chronic bronchitis, is a short-term condition that typically fades in two to three weeks, whereas chronic bronchitis is a permanent or constantly recurring condition, most often caused by smoking or the inhalation of irritants or dust. To be classed as chronic bronchitis, a cough must be present for a minimum of three months in each of two consecutive years and all other possible causes ruled out.
Read more about Chronic Bronchitis
Symptoms of a chest cold
The main symptom of a chest cold is a cough, which will often be persistent and accompanied by the coughing up of mucus. The production of excess mucus is normal during a chest cold – a response designed to protect the respiratory tract from germs and bacteria. Other symptoms may include:
- Aches and pains
- Other symptoms associated with a cold or flu
The cough associated with a chest cold will typically take two to three weeks to disappear completely. If you are experiencing any symptoms of a chest cold, try using the free Ada app to carry out a symptom assessment.
Causes of a chest cold
A chest cold can be either a viral or bacterial infection, though it is far more common to contract the condition virally. The viruses that cause the condition are of the same variety as those that cause the common cold or flu, and it usually develops from these conditions. If a cold or flu seems to worsen, therefore, it may be that a chest cold has developed.
The viruses that cause a chest cold are most commonly passed on through tiny droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes or talks. The virus can survive on a surface such as a countertop or door-handle, for example, for up to 24 hours. To help avoid infection, individuals should take measures such as washing their hands thoroughly and avoiding sharing drinking glasses and utensils.
Diagnosing a chest cold
Doctors will usually be able to diagnose a chest cold by asking some questions about a person’s symptoms and by performing a physical examination. In some cases, a doctor may order further tests to diagnose the condition or distinguish it from other conditions. These tests include:
- Pulmonary function test: Used to check for signs of asthma or emphysema.
- Sputum tests: Used to identify the bacteria within sputum (mucus).
- X-ray: Potentially useful in identifying the source of an individual’s symptoms.
Chest cold treatment
A chest cold does not require treatment in all cases – it will normally begin to fade in two to three weeks,** though the cough may persist for longer.
If the coughing is particularly severe, cough medication is available over the counter, or it may be prescribed by a doctor. Pain relievers such as ibuprofen and paracetamol can be taken to suppress pain. For those with allergies, asthma or chronic obtrusive pulmonary disease, a range of medications can be prescribed as needed.
As a chest cold is in most cases caused by a virus, antibiotics are useless and may even be harmful. However, if it is thought that a chest cold is bacterial in origin, antibiotics can be used to effectively treat the condition.
Chest cold home remedies
Although treatment may not be necessary for a chest cold, there are a range of home remedies that can be used to manage its symptoms. Some of the most common home remedies include:
- Rest: Rest is vital in order to help the immune system regain its strength.
- Hydration: Drinking plenty of water helps thin out the mucus in the chest, making it easier to cough up.
- Hot drinks and lozenges: Drinks such as tea with honey and over-the-counter lozenges can provide some relief from certain symptoms.
- Steam: Steam from a hot shower or towel can help dislodge mucus and relieve symptoms.
There are many natural products which can effectively help alleviate the symptoms of a chest cold. These include:
- Apple cider vinegar: Raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar helps thin the mucus in the chest, which can reduce congestion and help a person with a chest cold to breathe better. Drinking a solution of warm water mixed with two teaspoons of apple cider vinegar two or three times a day for a week will help reduce the duration of a chest cold and strengthen the immune system, preventing future colds.
- Turmeric: Tumeric, a plant and spice that grows in Southeast-Asian and Middle-Eastern countries, is very effective at reducing the symptoms of a chest cold. It contains the compound curcumin, which has antiviral, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. Adding around a teaspoon of raw, grated turmeric or powdered tumeric to a hot drink several times a day or using it to flavour food can help alleviate the symptoms of a chest cold.
- Ginger: Ginger has been used as a natural remedy to treat various conditions for over 2000 years and is an effective agent in reducing the inflammation in the chest caused by a chest cold. It can be added to food in its raw state, brewed as a tea or taken as supplements.
- Essential oils: There are many different types of essential oils, each of which are particularly helpful with alleviating the symptoms of a different array of conditions. The most helpful essential oils for treating a chest cold include frankincense, oregano, eucalyptus, tea tree and lemon. Essential oils can be added to a hot compress, bath water, dabbed on the neck and temples or administered using a vaporiser/diffuser. When using essential oils to treat a chest cold, always consult the instructions on the packaging for the most appropriate way to apply them.
Some herbal remedies and supplements are not compatible with underlying conditions or prescription medications. If, in addition to their chest cold, a person has a chronic (ongoing) condition and/or regularly takes any medications, they should consult their doctor before using any new natural products.
Chest cold prevention
The viruses that in most cases cause a chest cold can be hard to avoid, spread as they are by tiny, often undetectable droplets released into the air or onto surfaces. However, certain measures can be taken to try and avoid these viruses. They include:
- Washing hands frequently and thoroughly
- Getting plenty of rest
- Avoiding excessive touching of the eyes or mouth
- Avoiding sharing things such as drinking glasses or utensils
- Staying healthy with regular exercise, enough fluids and a balanced diet
- Getting vaccines for pneumonia, flu and whooping cough
Chest cold complications
Complications that can develop from a chest cold include:
- Pneumonia: The symptoms of pneumonia are typically similar to those of a chest cold, though may be more severe. The condition is easily treatable with antibiotics, though it is important that it is distinguished from a chest cold first. Elderly people, smokers and those with preexistent liver or kidney conditions are most at risk from contracting pneumonia. Read more about Pneumonia »
- Chronic bronchitis: A permanent condition typically caused by smoking or exposure to airborne irritants. A persistent cough, lasting for at least three months in two consecutive years, is the chief symptom of chronic bronchitis. A doctor should be able to diagnose the condition. Read more about Chronic Bronchitis »
Chest cold FAQs
Q: What is the duration of a chest cold?
A: Typically, a chest cold will develop three or four days after a cold or the flu and lasts for around two to three weeks. However, this is approximate and symptoms may last for longer. If this is the case, medical attention should be sought.
Q: I am pregnant. Should I be worried about a chest cold?
A: Special care should be taken by pregnant women to avoid a chest cold. However, if the condition does develop, women should be sure to consult a doctor who should be able to advise on an appropriate treatment method, if one is needed at all, including identifying medications that are safe to take during pregnancy.
Unfortunately, when pregnant, a chest cold is more likely to develop into a more serious respiratory condition like pneumonia. Seek urgent medical attention if the following symptoms develop:
- Chest pain
- Blood in the mucus
- High fever
- Unrelenting shortness of breath
Read more about possible Pregnancy Complications »
Q: Is a chest cold contagious?
A: Yes, the viruses that typically cause chest colds, are contagious. Avoid contact with infected individuals, wash your hands regularly and avoid sharing utensils and glasses to lessen the chances of picking up the condition.
Q: Are chest colds viral or bacterial?
A: In approximately 85 to 95 percent of cases, acute bronchitis is caused by a virus. The viruses are the same as those that cause the common cold and flu. People with underlying health conditions, such as streptococcus pneumoniae, haemophilus influenzae and moraxella catarrhalis, are more likely than otherwise healthy people to experience bacterial acute bronchitis.
Q: Can a chest cold turn into pneumonia?
A: Pneumonia can result from a chest cold as a secondary complication. Older people are especially susceptible to this. Symptoms of pneumonia include fever, an increased heart rate, chest pain and shortness of breath.
Read more about pneumonia »
90,000 What to take for influenza and SARS? Drugs for the treatment of the disease Anvimax
Drugs for the treatment of ARVI – what to take at a high temperature?
As you know, ARVI and influenza are an acute respiratory infection caused by a whole spectrum of respiratory viruses and characterized by similar symptoms. Treatment for influenza and ARVI requires special consideration. Among the most common symptoms of influenza, SARS are fever, pharyngitis (inflammation of the lining of the pharynx) and rhinitis (inflammation of the lining of the nose).What is characteristic, with ARVI, rhinitis is usually manifested by a runny nose and nasal congestion already from the onset of the disease, while with influenza, nasal congestion in the first days of the disease is practically absent. Naturally, every sick person dreams of purchasing a drug that will help him get back on his feet quickly. But most often we follow the path of symptomatic treatment of influenza, ARVI.
Influenza and ARVI: various symptoms and medications
Treatment of colds and viral infections begins with the elimination of the symptoms of the disease.Let’s list the most typical of them.
Fever is a condition during the flu, which is characterized by a temporary rise in body temperature above 37 degrees. This symptom of ARVI, influenza is observed in both children and adults. Fever is among the symptoms of most infectious diseases. With fever, there is an acceleration of metabolism, an increase in the activity of the immune system, and the rate of reproduction of bacteria and viruses often decreases. Thus, the body with influenza, ARVI helps itself to fight against foreign organisms.
Fever, which usually accompanies any flu, can have a different duration and severity, a different nature. For flu, ARVI, fever with a moderate rise in temperature is characteristic, up to 38.5, less often up to 39 degrees, and the high temperature usually lasts for a short time. This symptom for two or three days is more typical for influenza, and prolonged fever with fever is more typical for the complicated course of ARVI and influenza.
Although flu fever helps the body fight infection, it is not uncommon for it to do more harm than good to the body.For example, with insufficient fluid intake in both children and adults, a fever in just a few days can cause severe dehydration. Even a short-term high temperature up to a high mark of 40-41 degrees in an adult with influenza can be considered very dangerous and fraught with the development of shock and a number of vascular complications. If the temperature has reached 41 degrees and above, and continues to rise, it is highly likely that the body’s compensatory capabilities will not be enough to maintain normal life, and the patient risks losing consciousness or falling into a coma.In this case, it is necessary to take serious medications for effective treatment.
In most cases, the onset of fever is the result of exposure to pyrogenic substances. When an infection enters the body, when immune cells detect foreign organisms in the internal environment of a person, these cells begin to secrete special substances into the surrounding space – cytokines. It is cytokines that are responsible for the development of inflammation processes. Further, under the action of cytokines, prostaglandins, leukotrienes and other biologically active substances begin to be produced.Some of them, especially prostaglandins, are pyrogenic. It is they who, acting on the center of thermoregulation, cause fever.
Treatment of fever during influenza
Treatment of fever begins in the same way for everyone. They strive to fight this condition with all known antipyretic drugs, especially since more and more effective drugs are on sale. Knowing what leads to temperature, it is easy to understand the principle of antipyretic drugs. Many sick adults choose such drugs precisely for quick treatment, since it is necessary to quickly go to work, for example.Antipyretic drugs during treatment disrupt the work of a special enzyme – cyclooxygenase, which is necessary for the synthesis of prostaglandins – powerful pyrogens. When the production of prostaglandins decreases, the stimulation of the thermoregulatory center decreases, as a result of which the body temperature returns to normal values. This is how non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and paracetamol work. These drugs are well known to adults, and they are often taken as the most common antipyretic drugs.
Although NSAIDs and paracetamol are drugs that act in the same way, paracetamol is practically inactive outside the central nervous system. In this regard, a drug such as paracetamol, unlike NSAID drugs, is practically devoid of side effects (those who take it know about this) and has only a minimal analgesic effect. That is why it can be said about such a drug that paracetamol of all drugs has established itself as an excellent antipyretic agent in the treatment of influenza.
Anvimax for ARVI – the benefits of combination drugs for adults
Influenza is best treated with a more effective drug. One of these drugs based on paracetamol to combat ARVI is the combined drug Anvimax. ARVI treatment requires an integrated approach; which is why this drug works great. Unlike symptomatic drugs, which only lower the temperature and eliminate some other symptoms of the disease, this drug guarantees complex symptomatic treatment and at the same time fights against the cause of the disease – the virus.The component of Anvimax is Remantadin. This is an antiviral component that is drunk specifically to fight the flu virus. It turned out, however, that Remantadine enhances the immune response, and therefore, among other drugs, it is most effective against other respiratory viruses. Thanks to the inclusion of the drug Remantadin, the cold quickly passes. Anvimax has become not just a medicine to combat the symptoms of acute respiratory viral infections and rhinitis, but also a drug for the complex treatment of acute respiratory viral infections and influenza.
Thus, combined drugs, and, in particular, the modern drug Anvimax are the best way to fight fever, which must be taken strictly according to the instructions. This is the most effective drug used today in the treatment of acute respiratory viral infections in adults.
90,000 Influenza and colds – symptoms, differences and treatments
Influenza and its features
What is a cold
The main symptoms of a cold
Treatment of acute respiratory infections
Respiratory infections are a whole group of diseases with similar mechanisms of transmission of pathogens and symptoms.Among them – flu and other infections, which are commonly called the common cold. How to distinguish them from each other and what to do to recover faster?
Influenza and its features
Influenza is one of the acute respiratory viral diseases (ARVI), which is often isolated from the general group 7 . It is distinguished by a more severe course and a relatively high likelihood of complications. Of course, any ARVI can be difficult and with complications, but with the flu it happens more often 1 .
The structure of influenza is heterogeneous. The influenza A virus has the unique ability to mutate 6 . Having recovered from the disease caused by it, a person remains vulnerable to other subtypes of the virus and therefore can be re-infected 2 . Influenza A often causes epidemics and pandemics, during which the infection affects up to 20% of the world’s population 1.3 . The largest pandemic was in 1918-1919 – it claimed about 40 million lives.
Influenza B and C viruses practically do not change, they circulate together with influenza A, but do not cause epidemics 2 .
The source of infection is a sick person. And it doesn’t matter at all whether he has flu symptoms or not. It can be sick with an erased form and at the same time be dangerous to others 1 .
Infection most often occurs through airborne droplets, but the infection can also be transmitted through household items. Pathogens can remain viable for a long time in the environment: in indoor air – 2-9 hours, on paper, fabrics and other loose materials – up to 12 hours, on metal and plastic surfaces – up to 2 days 1 .
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Adult flu symptoms
The incubation period of influenza is short – from several hours to 1.5 days 2 . The disease is developing rapidly 1 .
Signs of intoxication come to the fore with flu:
The patient’s face becomes puffy and red during fever, lips and visible mucous membranes acquire a bluish tint, dilated blood vessels become noticeable on the white membrane of the eyes 1.2.7 .
By the end of the first day after the onset of influenza, symptoms of rhinitis appear: nasal congestion, itching and tickling in the nose, sneezing, liquid mucous discharge from the nasal passages. The defeat of the pharyngeal mucosa is accompanied by sore throat and sore throat, coughing, typical for pharyngitis 1.2 .
Influenza is characterized by the development of tracheitis (inflammation of the trachea), the manifestations of which are a feeling of stuffiness behind the breastbone and cough, at first dry, then wet with sputum 1.2 .
Influenza viruses infect small blood vessels. They become brittle, which often causes nosebleeds, small punctate hemorrhages appear on the skin and mucous membranes 1.2.7 .
On the part of the digestive system, symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, frequent loose stools are possible 1 .
Damage to the nervous system in mild cases of influenza in children and adults is limited to symptoms such as headache, lethargy or hyperexcitability; in severe cases, meningitis and meningoencephalitis may develop (inflammation of the brain and its membranes 1.2.7 ).
The temperature with influenza lasts about 4 days, then quickly decreases and returns to normal. At the same time, there is a reverse development of other symptoms 1.2 .
After suffering from influenza, 65% of adults retain signs of post-viral asthenia 1.7 : weakness and bad mood, reduced performance and exercise tolerance, problems with concentration and memory.
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Complications of influenza
Influenza can lead to diseases of the respiratory, cardiovascular, nervous system, kidneys, digestive tract, organ of vision and others.
The most common respiratory complications occur:
- acute bronchitis, or inflammation of the bronchi – 20-30%;
- croup (shortness of breath, loud barking cough with a metallic tinge) – up to 15%;
- Acute otitis media, or otitis media: symptoms are found in 35% of children with influenza;
- pneumonia, or inflammation of the lung tissue 1 .
- heart failure of varying severity;
- myocarditis and pericarditis – inflammation of the muscle and membranes of the heart;
- viral encephalitis (encephalomyelitis), or inflammation of the lining of the brain;
- nephritis – inflammation of the kidneys;
- infectious toxic shock;
- hemorrhagic shock 1 .
Influenza can aggravate the course of chronic diseases, therefore it is dangerous for patients with pathologies of the heart, blood vessels, respiratory and nervous systems. It is especially difficult for newborns, pregnant women and the elderly 1 .
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Do I need to see a doctor?
If you have flu, you should always see a doctor. Only he can assess the clinical picture, prescribe the necessary therapy, identify developing complications in time and, if necessary, send them to a hospital for treatment.
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What is a cold
The common cold in everyday life is often called ARVI, which differ from the flu in a milder course – by the type of pathogen there are more than 200 2.6.7 .
In most cases, the causative agents of the disease are:
- Rhinoviruses / enteroviruses – in 12–45% of cases;
- Parainfluenza viruses – 15-30%;
- Respiratory syncytial viruses – 10-30%;
- Coronaviruses – 3-13%;
- Adenoviruses – 2-4%.
As with influenza, the infectious process develops in the mucous membrane of the upper respiratory tract 6 , but then can spread to the bronchi, bronchioles and lung tissue.
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The main symptoms of a cold
The clinical picture of ARVI is largely similar, its nuances depend on the causative agent of the disease 2 .
Rhinovirus infection “dominates” in the autumn-winter period.The incubation period lasts 2-3 days. Body temperature does not exceed 37.5 0 C or remains normal. Typical manifestations: profuse liquid transparent foamy discharge from the nasal passages, itching and burning in the nose, causing sneezing attacks, nasal congestion and decreased sense of smell 1.4.5 . The leakage of mucus into the nasopharynx and pharynx can cause coughing 5 .
The course of rhinovirus infection is mild, the total duration of the disease is 7-14 days.
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Parainfluenza season usually begins in late winter and lasts until early spring.The disease develops gradually. The temperature rarely rises above 38 0 C, the symptoms of intoxication are also weakly expressed 3.4
The parainfluenza virus infects the larynx. A cold is accompanied by symptoms of laryngitis: the appearance of a dry, rough barking cough, hoarseness, pain in the neck 1.2 .
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The favorite seasons of adenovirus are spring, summer and autumn. Intoxication is quite strong, the body temperature can rise to 38 0 C and higher.A common symptom of a cold associated with adenoviruses is conjunctivitis. In addition, the virus infects the lymphoid tissue of the pharynx and causes the development of tonsillopharyngitis with its typical symptoms: sore throat and sore throat, aggravated by swallowing, and coughing. The mucous membrane of the pharynx becomes red, the pharyngeal tonsils are enlarged 1.4 .
Other symptoms include swollen and tender lymph nodes and liver, sometimes diarrhea 4 .
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Respiratory syncytial viral infection
Respiratory syncytial infection is more common during the cold season.The clinical picture of the disease unfolds rather quickly 4 . Intoxication syndrome is poorly expressed. Body temperature does not exceed 37.5 0 C 1 and lasts up to 2-7 days 2 . The virus infects large and small bronchi, causing the development of bronchitis and bronchiolitis with their characteristic cough, wheezing and shortness of breath 1.4 .
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Other respiratory diseases
Acute respiratory diseases (ARI) can be caused by bacterial microflora: pneumococci, streptococci, staphylococci, Haemophilus influenzae, mycoplasma, chlamydia and other microorganisms 3 .
Bacterial complications can develop against the background of ARVI. Hypothermia, physical exertion, stress and other factors that weaken the immune system sometimes contribute to the activation of opportunistic microflora and the development of pneumonia 3 .
The possible development of bacterial complications is said:
- no improvement in symptoms or worsening of the condition;
- high temperature persisting for more than 5 days;
- re-increase in body temperature after a period of normal temperature;
- appearance of perspiration and great weakness;
- change in the nature of the cough and the appearance of shortness of breath;
- accession of new symptoms 7 .
According to statistics, every fourth case of bronchitis and every fifth pneumonia is the result of chlamydial or mycoplasma infection. In young children, they often cause inflammation of the paranasal sinuses (sinusitis) and ear (otitis media) 3 .
Chlamydia can be in the body for a long time without causing any acute symptoms. A long-lasting dry cough and swollen lymph nodes may be the only symptoms of acute respiratory infections in an adult or child.Antibiotics traditionally used to treat bacterial pneumonias are ineffective and provide no relief, and chest x-ray shows bilateral pneumonia 3 .
Mycoplasma affects the upper and lower respiratory tract. The course of the disease is protracted, often with complications in the lungs (pleurisy), heart (myocarditis) and the lining of the brain (arachnoiditis) 3 .
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When to see a doctor
Despite the apparent lightness, you should not self-medicate and endure colds on your feet.You still need to see a doctor, at least in order not to miss diseases that resemble ARVI in their symptoms. Their treatment in adults and children will be fundamentally different from the treatment of viral infections.
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Treatment of acute respiratory infections
Treatment of influenza, other acute respiratory viral infections and bacterial respiratory infections has common features and differences.
In all cases, you need to stay at home, contact with other family members as little as possible, use individual dishes and cutlery.It is necessary to ventilate the room more often, to regularly carry out wet cleaning and disinfection of household items 1 .
During the febrile period and within 3 days after the temperature has returned to bed rest 1 . This is especially important in the treatment of ARVI in children, who, when the symptoms of intoxication decrease, immediately return to normal physical activity, which cannot be done.
To reduce the symptoms of intoxication, drink plenty of fluids.Drinks made from berries and fruits rich in vitamin C are useful: lemon, rose hips, chokeberry, currants. The diet provides for a decrease in the calorie content of the diet in the first days of the disease, frequent fractional meals 6-7 times a day and the use of foods in liquid and well-crushed form 1 .
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Drug treatment for acute respiratory infections includes etiotropic and symptomatic therapy. Etiotropic drugs act on the causative agents of the disease.So, for flu symptoms, treatment includes antiviral agents 1 . Bacterial respiratory infections are treated with antibiotics, taking into account the sensitivity of the pathogens to them 3 . For ARVI, symptomatic therapy is mainly used 1 .
Symptomatic treatment of acute respiratory infections involves the use of drugs:
- antipyretics, helping to cope with fever 1 ;
- anti-inflammatory, reducing the manifestations of inflammation 1 ;
- antitussive – to suppress dry cough 1 ;
- mucolytic and expectorant, facilitating sputum passage 1 ;
- vasoconstrictor nasal (decongestants) – to facilitate nasal breathing 5 .
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RINZA® for symptomatic treatment of ARVI and influenza
In the treatment of acute respiratory infections, combined drugs are widely used to combat several symptoms of the disease at the same time, such as RINZA®.
RINZA® tablets are intended for children over 15 years of age and adults. It contains paracetamol, phenylephrine, chlorphenamine and caffeine to help combat fever and headache, nasal congestion and runny nose at the same time 8 .
RINZASIP® with vitamin C in powder form for preparing hot drinks with lemon, orange and black currant flavors is intended for symptomatic treatment of adults and children over 15 years old. Due to its inclusion in the composition of ascorbic acid, it can help to strengthen the immune system and increase resistance to infection 9 .
RINZASIP® for children over 6 years old is available in the form of a powder for making a drink with a raspberry flavor. In addition to paracetamol in children’s dosage and vitamin C, it contains a vasoconstrictor component – pheniramine maleate, the action of which is aimed at reducing mucosal edema and relieving nasal congestion 10 .
The information in this article is for reference only and does not replace the professional advice of a physician. Consult a qualified professional for diagnosis and treatment.
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- Orlova N.V. Flu. Diagnostics, strategy for choosing antiviral drugs // Medical Council. – No. 20. – 2017 .– S. 80-86.
- Litvinova S.N., Oshchepkova M.V., Chukaeva I.I.Influenza in outpatient practice // Medicine. – No. 1. – 2005 .– S. 29-45.
- Orlova N.V., Suranova T.G. Acute respiratory diseases: features of the course, drug therapy // Medical Council. – No. 15. – 2018 .– S. 82-88.
- Zhuravleva M.V., Lazareva N.B., Panteleeva L.R. ARVI: rational pharmacotherapy from the standpoint of clinical pharmacology // Medical Council. – No. 04. – 2016 .– S. 68-72.
- A.A. Zaitsev. Influenza and acute respiratory viral infections: rational symptomatic therapy // General Medicine No. 3.2016, pp. 21-28.
- L.V. Luss. An integrated approach to the treatment of influenza and ARVI // Medical Council No. 5, 2017, pp. 168-173.
- S.S. Yakimova. An integrated approach to the treatment of influenza and colds // Medical Council, No. 5, 2013, pp. 14-19.
- Instruction for medical use of RINZA® tablets.
- Instructions for the use of RINZASIP® with vitamin C.
- Instructions for the use of RINZASIP® for children.
Science: Science and Technology: Lenta.Common crawl en
Colds, also known as acute respiratory viral infections (ARVI), usually last three to nine days, and a runny nose and cough can last up to two weeks. However, improper treatment or neglect of the disease turns out to be much more serious troubles. In this case, complications may arise, due to which the disease will drag on for a month or more and even require hospitalization. So what should be done (and what not to do) to help the body fight ARVI?
First, you need to remember that prolonged exposure to cold air and hypothermia by themselves are not the cause of a cold.The common cold, like other respiratory diseases, is caused by viruses that attack the immunocompromised body. The misconception that cold causes colds is partly based on the fact that SARS is seasonal in nature, and more often people get sick in the fall or spring. The reasons for the seasonality are not exactly known, but scientists suggest that in cold and wet weather, a person is more vulnerable to respiratory infections due to temperature reactions in the respiratory system. In addition, in the fall, children begin to go to school and adults return from vacation, which increases the likelihood of transmission from person to person.Public transport, shops and other crowded places are especially dangerous in this respect.
The first mistake a sick person makes is to ignore symptoms for three days after they appear. Some people choose to carry the disease on their feet, becoming a threat to others. During this period, the infection caused by various respiratory viruses (causative agents of the common cold) is most contagious. Viruses cause damage to the upper respiratory tract, which causes a person to sneeze and spread pathogens along with droplets of liquid.They are not only inhaled by other people, but also deposited on objects such as doorknobs. Many viruses in the external environment can survive for a long time, so one of the most effective ways to protect yourself from them is personal hygiene, including hand washing.
The second mistake is to think that the disease will go away by itself. Of course, the severity of ARVI and the time of illness depend on the immune system to a greater extent than on our attempts to recover quickly. However, if no action is taken, bacteria can enter the viruses, causing complications.And then bed rest and medication will be inevitable.
Simple measures include drinking fluids for fever and gargling with a mild salt solution. The first helps to cope with dehydration due to fever and sweating, and also reduces the viscosity of mucus. Mildly hot drinks and soups improve the drainage of nasal secretions in upper respiratory tract infections. Gargling is a conservative measure that helps prevent the infection from spreading to the entire throat and lower respiratory tract.
In total, more than 300 viruses are known that can cause ARVI. They are constantly present around us, and the immune system successfully copes with their attacks. But due to vitamin deficiency, stress and worsening weather, immunity can weaken. For more information on how to protect yourself from illness, read the special project “Lenta.ru”.
But, in principle, all treatment for acute respiratory viral infections comes down to alleviating symptoms – for example, a decrease in temperature and the severity of a cold. At the same time, there is no need to bring down a low temperature (from 37 to 38 degrees), because an increase in body temperature is a natural reaction of the body, directed against the pathogen and helping to cope with the disease faster.
Since viruses are a common cause of the disease, at first glance, it is logical to fight them using antiviral drugs. However, their use is advisable only in the first 24-48 hours from the onset of the disease *.
Other remedies, such as vitamins, are widely used to treat colds. Despite careful research, scientists have not yet been able to confirm that vitamin C helps prevent colds, although there is evidence that it may reduce the duration of the illness.There is also no evidence that vitamin D and garlic help.
Compliance with bed rest and rest is a frequent recommendation for colds and flu. The “no time to get sick” principle here works against ourselves, and the desire to drown the symptoms and transfer the disease on our feet can come at a high cost. At the same time, being at home, you should periodically ventilate the room and carry out wet cleaning in order to prevent viruses from settling on the surface and to reduce their number in the room.
Another common mistake is taking antibiotics without a specialist prescription.Antibiotics target bacteria, and SARS are caused by viruses. Antibacterial drugs are not useful for viral infections, but they are often used for flu and severe colds. As a result, antibiotics do not bring any benefit, and they can harm the body. Given that people can get SARS several times a year, frequent use of antibiotics can lead to a loss of the effectiveness of drugs. This will make treatment more difficult when they are really needed.
At the first symptoms, you should consult a specialist and not bring the matter to complications.It is easier to prevent a complication than to treat it later. In order to reduce the risk of complications, Broncho-Munal® can be used.
Unlike antiviral agents, Broncho-Munal® helps the immune system fight viruses – the cause of colds and bacteria – a common cause of complications. The preparation Broncho-Munal® contains lysates – components of destroyed cells of 21 strains of bacteria, the most common causative agents of respiratory tract infections. Taking 1 capsule in the morning for 10 days promotes recovery ** and reduces the risk of complications **.
* Baranov A.A., Lobzin Yu.V., Federal clinical guidelines for the provision of medical care to children with acute respiratory viral infection (acute nasopharyngitis), 2015
** Instructions for the medical use of Broncho-Munal® ,
Jara-Pèrez JV et al. Primary prevention of acute respiratory tract infections in children using a bacterial immunostimulant: a double-masked, placebo-controlled clinical trial. Clin Ther 2000; 119: 1742-8.
CJSC Sandoz, 125315, Moscow, Leningradsky prospect, d.72, bldg. 3. Tel. +7 (495) 660-75-09. www.sandoz.ru
Brief instructions for use.
Cold. What is important to know about her? – In the vast majority of cases, the common cold is a viral infection of the upper respiratory tract, which leads to inflammation of the mucous membrane lining this part of the respiratory tract. – Articles about health
Common symptoms are rhinorrhea (runny nose), sneezing, pharyngitis (sore throat).
A viral infection that we call the “common cold” can often be treated without medication by resting, drinking plenty of fluids, and some over-the-counter medications to relieve certain symptoms. So far, there are no drugs that are effective against causative agents of colds.
Smoking “helps” the development of colds, including in the presence of children, as it paralyzes the ciliated cells (ciliated epithelium), which ensure the purity of the respiratory tract.Colds can spread through the hands, not just through the air. To prevent the spread of viruses, do not touch your eyes, mouth and nose, and often wash your hands when you are sick or in contact with a sick person.
Some other diseases are similar in symptomatology to colds, but require immediate medical attention and special medications. If you have a high fever (temperature higher than 38.0 ° C), accompanied by chills and a cough with thick mucus, or if coughing and deep breathing cause severe chest pain, you may have pneumonia.An urgent need to consult a doctor to establish a diagnosis and initiate appropriate treatment.
The safest, best, and cheapest way to treat a cold is to do almost nothing at all and let the illness go away on its own. Take medications to relieve individual symptoms as needed.
How to treat a cold
The best way to treat colds without medication is to drink plenty of fluids, at least 8 to 10 glasses of soft drinks (preferably warm or hot), rest, and stop smoking.The only means that can in any way try to resist viruses are interferons (effective when used in the first – second day of illness, then useless) and KIP (Complex immunoglobulin drug) – effective when taken simultaneously with food during the first 3 to 5 days of illness …
In case of rhinorrhea (if a stream is flowing from the nose), it is not necessary to use medications, but it is better to be patient, since with rhinorrhea there is a drainage of mucus that expels the infection from the body, therefore, no medications should be taken.However, if rhinorrhea lasts more than a week, see your doctor.
For the same reason, it is not necessary to treat a productive cough (when something comes out when coughing).
If the symptoms cannot be stopped with the help of these measures, and these symptoms interfere with normal functioning, then the following safest and most effective remedies are recommended.
If your nose is blocked, especially if you cannot breathe freely, use nasal drops or spray containing oxymetazoline hydrochloride (for example, AFRIN), xylometazoline hydrochloride (for example, Nasal Nasal Spray) or phenylephrine hydrochloride (for example, drops or spray for the nose of NEO-SYNEPHRINE).But do not use them for more than three days.
In case of “nasal congestion”, do not use any oral decongestants (tablets, syrups). These medicines can raise your heart rate and blood pressure. In addition, they act as stimulants and worsen the process of falling asleep. When using a spray or nasal drops for 1 – 3 days (no more), 25 times less of the drug enters your body and, moreover, enters the nose, that is, where it is needed, and is not distributed throughout the body as is the case with oral medication.
For fever, headaches and body aches, use aspirin or paracetamol as needed (in children, paracetamol is preferred).
Cough is a necessary evil
The lungs are constantly self-cleaning to ensure effective breathing. Normally, mucus lines the walls of the lungs and protects them from foreign particles (smoke, dust, viruses). The cilia of the ciliated epithelium push mucus with adhering particles out of the lungs. Coughing helps to remove unwanted substances from the lungs more quickly.
Cough is beneficial as long as it removes unwanted substances such as phlegm (mucus) from the airways and lungs. This cough is called a productive cough and often occurs with colds, bronchitis and pneumonia. On the other hand, a dry, hacking (unproductive) cough can be annoying and interfere with sleep. A cough can also be one of the symptoms of a chronic illness such as asthma, or it can be caused by cigarette smoke.
A productive cough is part of the recovery process from colds and flu.Every effort should be made to remove unwanted material from the lungs by “releasing” phlegm. This is the purpose of the expectorant, which liquefies the secretions so much that they can be cleared more easily by coughing (expectoration). The best expectorant is water, especially in warm liquids such as soup, which looses phlegm and helps moisturize the airways. A humid environment also contributes to this. You should drink plenty of fluids and, if possible, humidify the air in your home with a humidifier or by evaporating water using an evaporator.In winter, you can simply put a tray of water on the radiator. Doctors of the old school recommend, for the same purpose, the use of enzymes (mezim, panzinorm, festal) because of the pepsin they contain. Even if this is something wrong from a modern scientific point of view, regarding cough, then taking enzymes for a cold is still useful, since it accelerates the recovery of the body, or rather the pancreas, which suffers with any cold (the so-called reactive pancreatitis).
An unproductive cough, a dry cough that does not expel phlegm, can be treated with antitussive drugs.If you have a cough that interferes with your sleep or severely weakens your body, you can also use one of these remedies. One-component antitussive drugs should be used. Rest and plenty of fluids are also recommended when treating coughs.
Codeine, which is present in many prescription antitussive drugs, is not recommended for coughing. Codeine is addictive and can contribute to constipation.
When coughing, if the phlegm (mucus) becomes greenish, yellow, or takes on a foul smell, if the cough is accompanied by intense fever lasting several days, or if the cough or deep breathing causes severe chest pain or shortness of breath develops, consult a doctor.Any of these symptoms could indicate pneumonia. If you cough up blood, see a doctor immediately.
Fever, headache and muscle aches The common cold is sometimes accompanied by fever, headache and muscle aches. These symptoms are best managed without medication, with rest and fluid intake, or with aspirin or paracetamol.
It is not recommended to give aspirin for fever to a patient younger than 40: he may have the flu, not a cold.People who take aspirin for the flu (or chickenpox) are at an increased risk of developing Reye’s syndrome. This is a rather rare, but fatal disease, the victims of which, if they survive, remain disabled for life.
Consult a doctor if your body temperature rises above 39.4 ° C, or if a fever with a temperature above 38 ° C lasts more than four days. In these cases, the patient apparently does not have a cold.
Seek medical attention if:
- Fever with a temperature above 38.3 ° C, accompanied by chills and cough with expectoration of thick mucus (especially greenish or foul-smelling)
- Acute chest pain on deep inhalation
- that do not improve within seven days
- Fever with a temperature higher than 39.4 0 C
- Sore throat with one of the following:
- Pus (yellowish white spots) on the tonsils or in the throat
- Fever with a temperature above 38.3 0 C
- Enlarged or tender lymph nodes on the front of the neck
- Contact with a patient who has a documented case of sore throat or diphtheria
- Rash, which appears in the process of pharyngitis or after it
- A history of rheumatic fever, rheumatism, cardiovascular – vascular system, kidney disease, chronic lung disease such as emphysema or chronic bronchitis.
Why there is a “lingering” cough
Sometimes the above recipes “fail” – cough, malaise continues after 2 or more weeks from the onset of acute respiratory infections (colds). If this happens, you need to do tests and call a doctor.
In the overwhelming majority of cases, this is an “attack” of a new infection on an organism weakened by a cold. These infections have different names and fight them in different ways. Most often, mycoplasma “attacks”, in the second place are cases of “aggression” of pneumocystis.Sometimes mycoplasma and pneumocystis combine and bring the patient to a constant temperature of 37-38 degrees, severe sweating, poor sleep (cough does not allow sleep, wakes up), weakness (asthenia).
Less often, a lingering cough is caused by fungi (candida) or chlamydia (usually pulmonary). Another cause of this cough can be tuberculosis. In infants, similar phenomena can occur due to cytomegalovirus.
Any of these infections, if incorrectly diagnosed and treated, can severely impair quality of life.Bronchitis is most common, but pneumonia can also develop. In the United States, 40% of bronchitis in children is mycoplasma. The main alarming symptom is a long-term (more than 2 weeks) persistent cough. Sometimes mycoplasma, pneumocystis, chlamydia and cytomegalovirus “stick” to children with bronchial asthma, asthmatic bronchitis – attacks become more frequent. After diagnosing and treating these infections, children forget about bronchial asthma for a long time.
The resistance of these microorganisms in the external environment is low – they quickly die, therefore the main method of infection is close household contact.People can become infected with mycoplasmosis or pneumocystosis (less often chlamydia) in any “close” group – at work, at the institute, in kindergarten, at school, in the yard, in regular guests, from constantly coughing relatives.
“Candidal” cough usually occurs as a consequence of excessive or improper intake of antibacterial drugs, such as biseptol, bactrim, septrim, ampicillin, ampiox, etc.
In the current economic and, therefore, social environment, tuberculosis, as a “disease of the poor,” can overtake you in public transport, and in a shop, and at a train station.The only thing that calms down is that although there are many “infectious” people, it is quite difficult to get infected with a short contact. It is better to start the diagnosis of tuberculosis at a polyclinic phthisiatrician or in a tuberculosis dispensary at the place of residence. In difficult cases, or if you do not want to go to the dispensary, you can use the possibilities of paid diagnostics – the determination of bacteria by PCR or the detection of the level of antibodies to mycobacterium tuberculosis.
Diagnosis of mycoplasmosis, pneumocystosis, chlamydia, candidiasis and cytomegalovirus is quite complicated – there are no signs characteristic of only one disease, and the microbes themselves are so small that they cannot be detected by conventional microscopy.Mycoplasmosis, pneumocystosis, chlamydia, candidiasis and cytomegalovirus infection (CMVi) are detected either by smears examined by DNA diagnostics methods, such as polymerase chain reaction (PCR), or by immunofluorescence (which is less reliable), or by examining blood from a vein to the presence of antibodies to these pathogens.
There are no “home” remedies for these diseases, but modern antibacterial drugs are highly effective – the cure rate reaches 95%.
Preventive measures.Without studying the immune status in the cold season, you can drink 2-3 courses of herbal adaptogens – ginseng, eleutherococcus. The drugs are taken in the morning and afternoon, and in the evening, to relieve daytime stress and improve sleep, soothing herbal decoctions are needed – valerian, motherwort.
In order not to get sick during an epidemic of viral diseases, in addition to vitamins and adaptogens, it is good to take homeopathic medicines Griphel, Antigrippin, Influcid. The flu shot, which is given every year, will protect you from this illness.Vaccination with the influenza vaccine must be done before the onset of the influenza epidemic, so that immunity can be developed. It makes no sense to get a flu shot in the midst of an epidemic, or when a person is already sick, since the vaccine will not protect against the disease.
For people who often suffer from otitis media, tonsillitis, bronchitis, there are drugs that protect against staphylococci, streptococci, hemophilus influenzae, Klebsiella. This is Ribomunil, Bronchomunal. It is better to entrust the selection of a prevention scheme to a doctor.
If someone in the family is sick, the rest should take preventive measures.It would be nice to arrange finely chopped or crushed garlic on saucers in the apartment. You can also put it in a pre-scalded teapot and breathe through the spout. Drink Tonsilgon or Antiseptin.
Inhalation of anti-inflammatory herbs – St. John’s wort, sage, eucalyptus or propolis inhalation – the same can increase the body’s defenses. As an inhaler, you can use a regular teapot – brew the herb with boiling water and inhale through a spout. You can use ready-made preparations – oils, solutions and tinctures – eucalyptus, propolis, fir oil, “Eucabal”, “Doctor MOM”, “Bronchicum”.The most convenient inhaler is the Russian ultrasonic “Monsoon”.
Multivitamins (Mul-Titabs, Unicap, Centrum and others) can be used as a prophylaxis for weakening the immune system. Yeast preparations (yeast extract “Favorite”, pangamin, etc.) have a good general strengthening effect. Multivitamin and yeast preparations are especially needed in autumn and spring, when there is a natural weakening of the immune system.
90,000 Prolonged rhinitis in children and adults: causes, treatment and prevention
What are the main causes of a lingering rhinitis? Does “chronic St. Petersburg rhinitis” exist? Why does my nose run out as soon as you go outside? We talked about this with the chief otorhinolaryngologist of the Northwestern Federal District, Sergei Ryazantsev.
Sergey Ryazantsev – Deputy Director for Scientific and Coordination Work of the St. Petersburg Research Institute of Ear, Throat, Nose and Speech of the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation.
Chief otorhinolaryngologist in the Northwestern Federal District, Honored Doctor of the Russian Federation, Professor, Doctor of Medical Sciences.
Prolonged rhinitis: allergies or …?
– What are the main causes of a lingering rhinitis?
– There may be several reasons.About 30% of lingering rhinitis can be attributed to allergic rhinitis. This figure is a global trend, it is quoted by the WHO. And according to forecasts this year, the proportion of allergic rhinitis will increase to 50%. But so far this is only a forecast. In general, we can say that there are much more allergic rhinitis. Another reason for persistent runny nose is dry air in the rooms where we spend most of our time. When the humidity drops below 50%, the cilia that line the nasal mucosa stop vibrating and the functions of the nasal cavity are impaired.A predisposing moment appears for the development of diseases of the nasopharynx, the spread of allergens, the occurrence of allergic rhinitis. Plus, a prolonged runny nose can cause prolonged (more than 7 days) use of vasoconstrictor drops – this will already be rhinitis medicamentous.
– What is the reason for the growing number of allergic rhinitis?
– There are several hypotheses on this topic. The most basic is hereditary. If either parent has an allergy, it can be inherited by genotype.And now genotypes are very much mixed, as people move from region to region, and the number of allergies transmitted by genotype is increasing. This is also a global trend. The second most important is the hygienic hypothesis. It is believed that the better we live, in more hygienic conditions, the worse the immune system trains. An urban child is always more likely to develop allergies than a rural child. Although there will be more provoking factors in the life of the latter. Therefore, it is believed that it is necessary to load the immune system in a metered dose in order to develop an adequate, normal reaction to various stimuli.
– How can you suspect that a lingering rhinitis is most likely allergic rhinitis?
– First of all, the effect of elimination of an allergen is when something disappears and a person gets better. They take the cat away and it gets better. The person goes on vacation, and it gets better. Moves to another house and it gets better. These are indirect signs that allow one to suspect that we are talking about allergic rhinitis. A doctor can confirm this guess by performing a simple blood test for immunoglobulin E.If it is elevated, then most likely it is allergic rhinitis.
How to treat rhinitis – allergic and non-allergic
– How is allergic rhinitis treated today?
– This condition is easy to correct and achieve remission with the use of corticosteroid sprays, of which there are now as many as 4 types. Recommended treatment regimen: 3 months of daily use, 6 months off. And this state can be easily brought under control. With a mild degree of allergy, 1 month of continuous use with a break of 3–6 months is sufficient.
– If, according to the tests, the allergy is not confirmed, and the runny nose does not go away, what to look for the cause?
– It is difficult to answer unequivocally. It will be necessary to seriously search for the cause. A specialist should understand this. You need to look for a chronic process – sinusitis, another infection. See how the sinuses work. In children, it often happens that one viral rhinitis is superimposed on another. That is, there is no lumen for the child to get better and the runny nose to stop. In such cases, you can use immunomodulators of microbial origin, as a variant of local “vaccination” (“Ribomunil”, “Bronchomunal”).In children, it shows good results in stimulating the immune system.
– Is washing as prevention of diseases of the nasal cavity a good idea?
– It’s justified. 20 years ago there was only one saline solution for these purposes, and now there are more than 30 of them. Prophylactic nasal lavage removes allergens and pathogens, normalizes the condition of the nasal mucosa. Coming home from school, kindergarten, a child always brings pathogens and allergens with him, and therefore washing is a good option for prevention.At one time, an experiment was carried out during an epidemic of acute respiratory viral infections and influenza: in kindergarten, the noses were washed prophylactically for children and, indeed, the incidence decreased significantly.
– But a child must be in contact with viruses and bacteria in order to develop immunity, and we constantly wash everything off …
– With prophylactic washing, we only wash away the pathogenic environment. Immunity is not stimulated when we restrict the child from contact and constantly use antibacterial agents such as antibacterial soap and others.When washing, we simply remove a certain amount of pathogenic flora, and contact with it has already occurred, and the immunological mechanism has been launched.
– Some pediatricians condemn the use of topical bactericidal and antibacterial sprays. Can they be used for a lingering cold?
– Preparations of this series (there are only 2 of them – “Isofra” and “Polydexa”) are indicated only with a confirmed bacterial infection, and not with every rhinitis. With viral rhinitis, no drops and sprays need to be used; a simple rinsing of the nose with saline solutions is enough.If we are talking about a bacterial rhinitis, then these drugs can and should be used.
– How to understand that rhinitis has become bacterial?
– With allergic rhinitis, the nasal discharge is absolutely always watery. In acute infectious (first viral, then bacterial) nasal discharge becomes mucous and thick already on days 2-3. This is an important differential diagnostic sign of allergic and infectious rhinitis. Accordingly, the approach to treatment is changing: antihistamines and topical steroids in the first case and vasoconstrictors (vasoconstrictors – ed.) and according to indications, topical antibiotics – in the second.
– What exactly can not be done when treating a cold?
– Fanatical to use vasoconstrictor drops. This is definitely not necessary.
Pure “St. Petersburg runny nose” – myth or reality?
– The climate of our city can be the reason for the lingering rhinitis, the so-called “Petersburg”?
– Of course, our climate is not the most comfortable. Although the same can be observed in the UK, and in any other northern seaside city.If the climate is humid, that’s not even bad. But most of the time we still live in apartments where the humidity is about 30%. And from runny nose we suffer, oddly enough, not because of high humidity or cold climate, but because of increased dryness in the premises. I have already spoken about this earlier.
– That is, the “St. Petersburg runny nose” – a myth?
– I think yes.
– But there is also a so-called “cold” rhinitis, which occurs just as a reaction to cold air?
– Yes, it should be considered a variant of allergic rhinitis.There is a concept of allergy to cold, when the nasal mucosa does not quite adequately respond to a temperature drop below 7 degrees Celsius – the cilia in it begin to work more slowly, and with such a slow motion, bacteria can accumulate and provoke the development of a true rhinitis. This is an individual feature. The easiest way to correct this type of rhinitis is by simply rinsing the nose with saline solutions.
A runny nose is not a hindrance to walking!
– Is the recommendation to walk in any weather and even with a runny nose justified?
– It is useful to walk in any weather.And even with a runny nose. In the 30s of the last century, when antibiotics were not yet available, they practiced sleeping in the open air in cold weather in sanatoriums. Although the beneficial effects of cold air have been used as a wellness treatment for the ENT organs, not for the nose. Today, most children spend their time not on the street, but at school, kindergarten or at home. It is a predisposing factor for the development of home allergic rhinitis.
– So, before the children were sick less, because they spent more time in the fresh air?
– Earlier, children really spent more time on the street.Skating rink, football, walks in the yard. Now they are constantly indoors. I talk a lot about unjustified school workload. Many countries around the world have completely abandoned homework. Our child is practically in bondage: 7 hours at school, then he does homework. Plus, outdoor games have given way to computer games. The child does not exist and does not play in the fresh air. This, of course, has a negative effect on the general condition.
The original article was published on the littleone website.com
Link to the full version of the material https://littleone.com/publication/6946-zatyazhnoy-nasmork-u-detey-i-vzroslyh-peterburga-prichiny-lechenie-i-profilaktika
Prevention of influenza and ARVI in children
Acute respiratory viral infections are the most common diseases in children and it is very important for parents to know about them. With these diseases, the respiratory organs are affected, which is why they are called respiratory. More than three hundred types of viruses and bacteria can become the culprits of acute respiratory viral infections.The most common causes of diseases are influenza viruses, parainfluenza, adenoviruses, rhinoviruses, respiratory syncytial viruses. Most often, “colds” are observed in children with reduced or weakened immunity, as well as in those who have numerous contacts in preschool institutions and schools. A small child can easily get sick when he meets a pathogen to which he has no immunity.
The source of infection is patients and carriers of the virus.The disease is transmitted by airborne droplets, but you can also get infected through objects and things that were in the use of the patient, for example, through towels and handkerchiefs. The susceptibility to infection is high and depends on the state of the person’s immunity. Re-illness is also possible, which is especially common in weakened children. The duration of the illness depends on the severity of the illness, the type of virus, and the presence or absence of complications.
Signs of the disease are caused by intoxication and catarrhal phenomena.Intoxication of the body is different: from mild malaise and low temperature to significant disturbances in the general condition with influenza with severe headache, fever, vomiting, delirium, confusion, pain in muscles and joints, cramps. The flu also has nosebleeds. Catarrhal symptoms include a runny nose, nasal congestion, and coughing. The cough is usually noted from the first days of the disease, at first dry and frequent, then moist with sputum production. The disease affects almost all respiratory organs.With inflammation of the larynx against the background of a hoarse voice and a rough “barking cough”, stenosis may develop, which is manifested by sudden difficulty in breathing, a sharp pallor or the appearance of a bluish skin tone. This condition of the child requires urgent action, and it is necessary to call an ambulance. Weakened and often ill children may develop pneumonia. Parents should be aware of the signs that might suggest pneumonia in a child. Fever above 38 degrees for more than three days, grunting breathing, rapid breathing, retraction of the pliable areas of the chest when inhaling, blue lips and skin, complete refusal to eat, anxiety or drowsiness are signs that require a second call to the doctor.
Viral diseases can be accompanied by bacterial complications, and then the picture of the disease becomes more complicated. Bacterial infections can manifest as pain in the ear, suppuration from the ear or eyes, swelling and redness of the cheeks or around the eyes, swelling and tenderness of the lymph nodes, pain when swallowing.
General principles of ARVI treatment
– The patient’s regimen should correspond to his condition – bed in severe cases, half-bed with improvement of his condition and usual – one or two days after the temperature drops.The temperature in the room should be 20-21 ° C, and during sleep – lower; frequent airing makes breathing easier, relieves a runny nose.
– Power does not require any special correction. If the child does not eat, there is no need to insist – when the condition improves, the appetite will be restored.
– Drinking regime is of no small importance. The patient loses a lot of fluid with sweat, when breathing, so he must drink a lot: tea, fruit drinks, vegetable teas. Oral solutions sold in pharmacies are best given in half with tea, juice, boiled water.
– Medicines must be prescribed by a doctor. What medications a child needs – the doctor decides, depending on the state of the body. The choice and prescription of medications also depend on the signs and severity of the disease.
– A repeated call to the doctor is necessary in the following situations: the temperature remains above 38 ° C for two to three days after the start of treatment, increased anxiety or excessive sleepiness, the appearance of vomiting and impaired consciousness, the appearance of signs of laryngeal stenosis or pneumonia.
Non-specific prevention of ARVI
Correct organization of a child’s day regimen, which does not require material expenditures, but requires maximum attention and time from parents, is the basis for the health of a growing organism. Adequate and varied nutrition will provide the need for vitamins and minerals. It is important to improve the air environment in the house – often ventilate rooms, sleep with an open window. Among the fortifying measures, hardening is the most effective.It allows, if not completely to avoid “colds”, then to reduce the likelihood of the child’s illness. It hardens well the cooling of the soles of the feet, the skin of the neck, the lower back, however, to obtain a uniform effect, it is best to act on the whole body. The maximum duration of cold exposure to a child should not exceed ten to twenty minutes, its repetition and gradualness are much more important. It is necessary to start hardening from the first weeks of life – these are air baths during swaddling, gymnastics before bathing, bathing, rubbing with a towel after bathing.Already from the first month of life, the child should be taught to walk in the air, gradually increasing their duration to three to four hours a day. In the summer, the child should be allowed to run barefoot. Bathing in an open pond, bathing or sauna hardens well. Such types of hardening as “winter swimming”, walking barefoot in the snow, dousing with cold water are considered dangerous for a child, while the child cools down much faster than an adult and gets sick. Hardening after a mild acute respiratory infection can begin in ten to fourteen days, and in the case of an illness with a prolonged temperature reaction, four to five weeks after recovery.
Specific prevention of ARVI
Everyone knows about the threat of influenza; preventing influenza, especially a child, is the primary concern of both parents and pediatricians.
Currently, various preparations of live and inactivated influenza vaccines are registered and approved for use in Russia. For children, it is recommended to use inactivated vaccines, which are highly purified immunizing antigens of influenza A and B viruses.New generation vaccines contain only killed, destroyed influenza viruses, as a result of special treatment, virus particles that cause adverse reactions have been removed, and the main components that provide long-term protection against different variants of the influenza virus have been preserved. This made it possible to significantly reduce the frequency of adverse reactions while maintaining the high efficiency of vaccination. New generation vaccines are approved for use in both adults and children. Of the most famous influenza vaccines, the vaccines Grippol (Russia), Influvac (Germany), and Fluarix (Belgium) should be noted.These vaccines can be used in children as young as six months of age. The vaccines have proven to be highly effective and well tolerated. This is especially important for children with chronic diseases of the respiratory system, cardiovascular system, pathology of the central nervous system. These children are seriously ill with the flu and must be vaccinated.
City Children’s Hospital No. 3
Sugutskaya Galina Dmitrievna, head of the preschool-school department
90,000 Fever without symptoms – causes and treatment
A persistently elevated temperature is also called hyperthermia.It is an overreaction of the body to internal processes. It is noted for pathologies in any system or part of the body. If it does not subside for a long period, then it indicates a serious malfunction in the body.
There are three types of elevated temperature :
- low level – from 37.2 to 38 degrees
- medium level – from 38 to 40 degrees
- high level – from 40 degrees or more.
Swinging from 36.6 to 37.2 degrees is considered normal.Above 42.2 degrees usually causes loss of consciousness, and if kept at a high level for a long period, it provokes brain damage. According to the duration of the course, the increased temperature is divided into:
Causes of constantly elevated temperature
Most often, hyperthermia causes chills, fever, body aches, increased sweating, uncomfortable feeling.May not be accompanied by headache. Possible causes of persistently high temperature include:
- Immune system disorder
- thermoregulation disorder
- drug intake
- some procedures
- chronic infections
- helminthic chronic invasions
- thyroid hyperfunction
- autoimmune diseases
- rheumatic diseases, etc.
With such dysfunctions, low hyperthermia is observed – within 37.2-38 degrees. From time to time, there may be differences in the average level. Along with the typical manifestations (loss of body weight, high fatigue), there is also increased sweating at night.
A jump in temperature can be sudden (with toxic shock) or gradual (with microplasma pneumonia). According to the degree of manifestation of hyperthermia in this case, it can be high or low.If the temperature rises against the background of a rapid heartbeat (tachycardia), confusion and shortness of breath, this may indicate a very dangerous syndrome – septic shock. It occurs with gram-negative bacteremia and peritonitis.
In primary oncological tumors (as well as metastases), prolonged periods of rather high body temperature are often observed. They have different properties. In acute leukemia, for example, low, slow-progressing hyperthermia occurs.It is accompanied by bleeding and pallor of the skin. However, in certain cases (with the same disease), a high temperature, on the contrary, gives a sharp jump.
Violation of thermoregulation
It is accompanied by a sudden rise in temperature up to 41.7 degrees. As a rule, it is noted with such dangerous ailments as malignant hyperthermia, thyrotoxic crisis, stroke, as well as damage to the central nervous system (central nervous system). An increased temperature (low to medium level) is complemented by increased sweating.
In this situation, a constantly elevated temperature is due to sensitivity to penicillin antibiotics, sulfonamides, antifungal agents and some other drugs. It also appears during chemotherapy and taking medications that provoke a strong sweat production.
Permanent intermittent hyperthermia is noted during postoperative rehabilitation. It usually lasts for almost the entire period of the body’s recovery.It is provoked by interference with the natural structure of the body and is its defensive reaction to the manipulations performed (tissue resection, suturing, etc.). A persistently high body temperature is also caused by radiological examinations using contrast media.
Latent infections are capable of producing prolonged and persistent hyperthermia. As a rule, fever is provoked by hepatitis viruses of several forms (TTV, E, B, D, C, G), salmonella, borrelia, toxoplasma, mycoplasma, chlamydia, herpes virus (6, 2 and 1), Epstein-Barr, cytomegalovirus, streptococci, etc.It is very resistant to chronic processes in the sinuses, tonsils and pharynx.
They also give a high temperature, which is maintained for a long period. Moreover, in the analysis of feces, parasites may be absent. More accurate data are obtained by donating blood to establish antibodies to helminths. The elevated temperature is persistent and can give a sharp jump in case of mass intoxication of the body with the waste products of parasites.
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
This is one of the most common conditions of modern man. And at the same time, the syndrome with the most prolonged persistent hyperthermia. It is accompanied by nervous exhaustion, depression, muscle and joint pain, rapid fatigue.
If the thyroid gland begins to work too intensively or is inflamed, it also provokes a rise in temperature for a sufficiently long period. In this case, the characteristic symptoms of gland dysfunction may be absent.