By Dominique Noriega
With the fall season comes the cold season, when red noses and empty tissue boxes are not an uncommon sight. They are, however, preventable ones.
School nurse Cyndi Aldrich, who fell ill to a head cold last week, offered specific advice regarding to choosing medicine. She said always to check what the medicine does specifically before taking any in order to avoid the common problem of overmedication.
Aldrich said NyQuil, for example, should never be taken in the daytime because it contains an active ingredient that puts people to sleep. There are histamines for every possible cold, yet because there are so many, it is easy to take the wrong one.
According to Aldrich, the risk of taking the wrong medicine can affect one’s immune system. If someone intakes a medicine that is unnecessary, the medicine may not be as effective if needed to be used later.
Home remedies can be just as effective as medicines, according to Livestrong.com. Lemon helps reduce mucus while honey can smooth out the throat in the case of a sore throat. Gargling salt water also helps soothe a sore throat if done daily. Garlic has allicin which helps hide symptoms further as well, according to WebMd.com. Both lemon and honey are effective mixed with boiling water and crushed ginger.
Regular intake of Vitamin C can shorten the length of a cold although it cannot prevent one from occurring. Steamy showers and nose blowing also help clear sinuses.
The key to preventing the common cold is to keep hands clean, avoid people infected, and not to share food at this time of year, Aldrich said. Whenever she gets sick, she changes her toothbrush to ensure she gets rid of all the bad germs. Hand sanitizer is only second best to soap and water for proper hand cleaning, Aldrich said.