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Understanding the Common Cold, and Flu Remedies

Cold and flu (influenza) are very common infections of the upper respiratory tract and remedies in various forms can help to ease our symptoms.

The respiratory tract includes your nose, throat, ears and sinuses – these areas are often attacked by the common cold and influenza.  Symptoms include:

  • Sneezing
  • Blocked or runny nose
  • Sore throat and pain when swallowing
  • High temperature and mild fever
  • Earache
  • Tiredness and sore muscles
  • Headache
  • Coughing

Sneezing and a runny nose (rhinorrhoea) are usually the very first signs of cold or flu, and can start with clear fluid – over a period of a few days, this can develop into a thick yellow/green mucus.  Flu remedies, flu medicines, cold relief products and alternative treatments all help to alleviate uncomfortable ailments.

Understanding Flu Remedies

A cold virus is deposited into the front of the nasal passage, and it takes as little as between 1 and 30 particles of a cold virus to cause an infection.  From the time that the virus enters the nose, it takes 8-12 hours for the viral reproductive cycle to be completed and for new viruses to be released through nasal secretions.  Symptoms can begin shortly after, and typically peak after 36-78 hours after contraction.

Most colds do not last very long and will perish after a few days of rest, and some people require no specific flu treatment.  However, flu remedies or supplements can help to relieve symptoms and provide a more comfortable recovery period.  In addition to using over-the-counter or prescription drugs for cold and flu, it can also be beneficial to do the following:

  • Get plenty of rest
  • Drink plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration

Flu Remedies and Children

Although the peak seasons for cold and flu are during the colder winter months, it can occur at any time of the year, with one particular type of virus thriving in the summer.  People of all ages can be affected and some children are at particularly high risk from the complications of flu – for example those who have a poor immune system or have chronic lung or heart disease.

Children can be given similar flu remedies and treatments, but it is important to check the packaging of store bought remedies for age guidelines and recommended dosage. Natural or herbal remedies make a great medicinal alternative for children as well as adults.


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