Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Best Over The Counter Meds For Cold Flu

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Vicks Sinex Severe Original Ultra Fine Mist Nasal Spray Decongestant

Over-The-Counter Cold And Flu Medicines Becoming Harder To Find


Vicks Sinex Severe Original Nasal Spray can help relieve one of the most frustrating symptoms of a cold or the flu: a stuffy nose. This medication, which you can spray directly into your nose, works to relieve both nasal congestion and sinus congestion. Its effective for the common cold, hay fever, and even some upper respiratory allergies. And this nasal spray works quickly to provide you with relief.

This over-the-counter option is effective because it shrinks swollen nasal membranes. That allows you to breathe more easily, and it may even relieve the pressure that comes with congestion.

Preventing The Spread Of Colds

Wash your hands often. This is the best way to stop the spread of germs.

To wash your hands correctly:

  • Rub soap onto wet hands for 20 seconds. Make sure to get under your fingernails. Dry your hands with a clean paper towel and turn faucet off with paper towel.
  • You can also use alcohol-based hand sanitizers. Use a dime size amount and rub all over your hands until they are dry.

To further prevent colds:

  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cough or sneeze into a tissue or into the crook of your elbow and not into the air.

Ibuprofen For Pain And Fever

Ibuprofen can be given for pain and symptoms of fever in adults and children of 3 months and over, according to their weight. Make sure youve got the right strength for your childs age and weight as overdosing can be dangerous.

Read and follow the directions on the label carefully. If you are not sure check with your doctor or pharmacist. Avoid ibuprofen if your child has asthma, unless advised by your doctor.

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Is It Safe To Take A Decongestant If I Have High Blood Pressure

This type of medicine can increase blood pressure and heart rate, and raise the risk of heart attacks and strokes.

Pseudoephedrine is the main decongestant taken by mouth that’s available. In general, if your blood pressure is well controlled with medications, then a decongestant shouldn’t be a problem as long as you closely watch your BP. This may not be true with certain types of blood pressure drugs, so check with your doctor or pharmacist about what may be best for you.

Benefits Of Breastfeeding For Immune Health

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Breastfeeding has a number of benefits for the baby and the nursing parent. Your body produces antibodies that are passed to your baby, which then protect them from your cold or viral infection.

If you are too sick or weak to breastfeed, you might try pumping milk to keep up your supply.

Supplementing with baby formula is also an option, and its absolutely safe. If you are unable to breastfeed, your baby can receive the nutrients they need from formula.

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What Else Can I Do To Prevent Getting Colds And The Flu

Wash your hands frequently with soap and water or alcoholic hand wipes. Cold and flu viruses are spread by touching your nose or mouth after touching an infected person, breathing in the air of an infected person’s sneeze or cough, or touching objects that have come in contact with the virus and then touching your nose.

Other prevention tips are to eat healthy, exercise, get plenty of sleep, drink plenty of liquids , and avoid close contact with people who have colds. Also, get an annual flu vaccine.

What Is The Return Policy

Return policy is the most important thing to consider regarding the best cold and flu medicine over the counter from a manufacturer. If youre unsatisfied or something goes wrong with your purchase, youll want to know that you have some way to go about it. Additionally, weve compiled a list of highly reputable brands based on their return policies and customer service to help people find and choose the best cold and flu medicine over the counter.

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What Are Other Ways To Treat And Prevent The Flu

Antiviral prescription medicines and an annual flu vaccine are available for treating and preventing the flu.

Prescription anti-flu medicines include amantadine , rimantadine , zanamivir and oseltamivir . These drugs do not cure the flu, but they can make the symptoms milder and make you feel better more quickly. They are only effective when used in the first 48 hours of flu-like symptoms.

These drugs are not needed for healthy people who get the flu. They are usually reserved for people who are very sick with the flu or those who are at risk of complications from the flu, such as people with long-term chronic medical conditions or older age.

Flu vaccine . Although there is currently no vaccine against the common cold, there is a vaccine to prevent the flu. The vaccine is available by both shot and nasal spray. It works by exposing the immune system to the viruses. The body responds by building antibodies against the flu. The flu shot contains dead flu viruses. The nasal spray contains live, but weakened, flu viruses. The nasal spray is only approved for healthy children and adults two to 49 years old and who are not pregnant.

Nyquil And Dayquil Severe Sinus Pressure And Pain Non

Best OTC Medications for the Winter Season – 5 Must-Have Cold and Flu Meds

Price: $16.94

Fighting a cold or the flu can require you to take medicine all day and all night long. Thats where an over-the-counter medicine that offers dual benefits can help. NyQuil and DayQuil Severe Sinus Pressure and Pain offers medication for any hour, any time. This combination pack of medicine can relieve both cold and flu symptoms, including coughs, sore throats, fevers, and congestion.

The DayQuil medicine included in this double pack is non-drowsy, and the NyQuil can help you get the rest your body needs. Its the ideal combination for fighting the effects of a cold or the flu 24 hours a day.

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Okay But What Types Of Cold Medicine Can You Take While Pregnant

Most medicines taken during pregnancy cross the placenta and reach the fetus, so it’s important to know which ones are safe, and which should be avoidedand what some natural remedies are instead.

The American Pregnancy Association recommended getting plenty of rest , drinking lots of fluids and trying some natural remedies.

For instance, to reduce congestion, place a humidifier in your room, elevate your head during rest time, or try nasal strips, per the American Pregnancy Association. To soothe a sore throat, gargle with warm salt water, drink warm tea, or suck on ice chips.

As far as OTC medications go, the American Pregnancy Association advised keeping the number to a minimum during pregnancy. Among the safest options for pregnant people are:

  • Acetaminophen can work for fevers, headaches, and body aches.
  • Most cough drops are generally considered safe to help ease a cough.
  • Anesthetic throat lozenges can relieve a sore throat.

Cold medicines that you may need to avoid, however, include:

  • Some pain relievers and fever reducers, such as aspirin, ibuprofen and naproxen
  • Afrin and other non-steroidal nasal decongestant sprays containing oxymetazoline
  • OTC herbal remedies like echinacea

To be on the safe side, always get your cold meds approved by your pharmacist or healthcare provider. Many healthcare providers advise staying away from all medicines during the first trimester.

Skip The Otc Cold Meds For Your Kids

Something else to consider: Over-the-counter cold medications are generally not recommended for young children. The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests that parents should only offer cold medicine to children between the ages of four and six if their childs doctor specifically recommends doing so.

For kids, theyre less effective and they can have a number of side effects, says pediatrician Dr. Elizabeth Mack, MD, professor and division chief of pediatric critical care at MUSC Children’s Health.

So, if youre a parent, dont feel that you should go stock up at the drugstore on cold meds for your sniffly, sneezy toddler. Try putting a humidifier in their room at night to keep the air moist, which can help with some of that nasal congestion.

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Combined Remedies To Treat Multiple Symptoms

Daytime examples: Benylin All-In-One Cold and Flu Caplets Robitussin Total Cough, Cold & Flu Vicks DayQuil Cold & Flu Multi Symptom Relief LiquiCaps.

Nighttime examples: Tylenol Complete Cold, Cough & Flu Benylin All-In-One Cold and Flu Night Caplets Vicks NyQuil Cold & Flu LiquiCaps.

How they work: If youre suffering from severe and multiple cold and flu symptoms fever, aches, nasal congestion, cough then a combination remedy could be your best choice for relief. These medications combine pain- and fever-reducers with decongestants, cough suppressants, expectorants and, in the nighttime products, antihistamines. There is almost any combination of ingredients available for any combination of symptoms, says Kalyn. Speak to your pharmacist to get help finding the product thats the best match.

Need to know: Follow package directions. Since these treatments contain several different drugs, its especially important to rule out any contraindications with your pharmacist and to avoid taking them with any other cold and flu medications.

If you dont have all of the symptoms listed on the package, consider an alternative product. You could experience unnecessary side effects if youre taking something for a symptom that doesnt need to be treated, says Kalyn. Also, she says, taking multi-symptom medications along with other cold or flu products may result in double dosing.

Try: Tylenol Complete Cold, Cough and Flu Day + Night Capsules, $13, well.ca

Nsaids And Your Heart

The 8 Best Cold Medicines of 2021

Certain NSAIDs are associated with a small increase in the relative risk for developing a heart attack, stroke, heart failure, atrial fibrillation, increased blood pressure, and blood clots. NSAIDs relieve pain and inflammation by inhibiting an enzyme called COX that produces molecules called prostaglandins. However, this enzyme also has additional important effects throughout the body, which may impact cardiovascular risk. For example, the inhibition of a form of COX called COX-2 in the lining of blood vessels may influence blood vessel injury repair, relaxation, and clotting. The inhibition of COX-2 in the kidney may influence fluid retention, which may in turn affect blood pressure and heart failure symptoms.

Large population studies have demonstrated that the use of NSAIDs similar to those in OTC cold and flu remedies is associated with about two additional cardiovascular events per 1,000 people per year among individuals without a history of cardiovascular disease . Among individuals with a history of CVD, this association increases to an additional seven or eight cardiovascular events per 1,000 people per year.

Thus, among individuals who do not have CVD, the use of NSAIDs such as ibuprofen or naproxen is usually a reasonable option for short-term symptom relief. For individuals who do have CVD, it is worth discussing use of NSAIDs with a doctor.

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How To Treat A Cold

Symptoms of a head cold include nasal and sinus congestion, sneezing, coughing, runny nose, headache, and minor pains. These can be uncomfortable and get in the way of your day. Since most people will recover on their own, medicine for a cold usually consists of over the counter remedies to help you cope with the discomfort. CVS offers a wide selection of the best cold and cough medicine to temporarily relieve your symptoms. Cough medicine is formulated with ingredients that act as a cough suppressant. These are usually available in a non-drowsy formula for daytime use, and in a drowsy formula to help control your symptoms at night. You may also wish to take an expectorant, which loosens mucus and makes it easier to cough up. For a severe cough, we recommend selecting a product specially formulated for intense symptoms, such as Mucinex. If your throat is sore from coughing, a soothing tea may bring relief. CVS carries a selection of the best cough remedies, so you can choose what works best for you.

Pharmacist Recommended Cold & Flu Medicines That Wont Break The Bank

As a pharmacist for 12 years, two of the most common questions I am asked are, What is the best medicine to take for the cold and flu? And, How much does it cost? Here are my top recommendations that wont break the bank:

1) Headache, Fever, Muscle Aches, Sore ThroatIbuprofen & Acetaminophen

I often use a combination of the two drugs, separating each by 3-4 hours so that I maintain a more consistent pain relief. Ibuprofen is the best treatment for a sore throat. Acetaminophen is great for a fever. Most people already have one or both of these at home, so the cost is zero.

2) Nasal CongestionPseudoephedrine or Oxymetazoline

I recommend pseudoephedrine over phenylephrine , which is useless. PSE can be a mild stimulant, so start with the 30mg tablets, as opposed to the 12 & 24-hour dosages, to avoid disrupting sleep. PSE should not be used in certain conditions like high blood pressure. In that case, I recommend a topical nasal decongestant like oxymetazoline. The generic formulations of both drugs are inexpensive.

3) CoughingMucinex/No Suppressant or Delsym

4) Other Symptoms, as needed: Loperamide , diphenhydramine

Diarrhea Loperamine is best

Sneezing Diphenhydramine is best, and can help dry out your sinuses. Allergy drugs like Zyrtec take a day or more to start working, so are not the best option.

5) Combination Drugs

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Are Antibiotics Used To Treat Colds

Common colds dont have an official treatment plan or remedy. Generally, you have to let them run their course and ease symptoms as they arise. In fact, taking antibiotics in an attempt to remedy a cold can cause additional harm and side effects without getting rid of the cold.

Because of the risk that taking antibiotics would have on your body when trying to use them to treat a cold, theyre not generally prescribed by a doctor.

What Medicines Should I Take To Prevent A Cold

The Best OTC Cold & Flu Medications

Below, find some over-the-counter products to take especially if you want to say nuh-uh to that bug. But be sure to speak with your doctor to address any health concerns.

Make sure you get seven to eight hours of quality sleep, minimize alcohol and sugary and processed foods, as that can weaken your immune system, Gandhi added. Make sure youre getting good exercise and keeping stress down stress weakens your immune system and can get you sick.

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Best Cold Medicine For Children

Cold medicines for children can get tricky. Children should not be given medications that are packaged and made for adults, and parents need to be aware that OTC products may contain multiple ingredients. It is very important to pay attention to the drug label, and discuss any questions with healthcare professionals since the risk of giving children more than the recommended dose, giving medication too often, and giving more than one product containing the same medication are common mistakes made. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends against using cough and cold medications in young children. It is also important to avoid any aspirin-containing medications in children, especially those with viral illnesses, given the risk of Reyes syndrome. Medications containing codeine and its derivatives, while effective in treating cough, should be avoided in those less than 18 years of age.



What Are The Common Otc Medications

Cough and cold medications

  • It can be stressful when a cough keeps your child awake at night. But coughing can be helpful. It can be a sign that the body is getting rid of mucus that irritates the airway. Syrups that stop this normal response of the body can be harmful to children.
  • Many OTC cough-and-cold products contain drugs that claim to ease coughing. Usually, they include dextromethorphan and/or diphenhydramine that reduce the cough reflex.
  • Some OTC drugs contain codeine. Codeine should not be used in children under the age of 12 for any reason.
  • Always check the label first to make sure the medication is suitable for your child. Talk to your health care provider if you have any questions about using cough and cold medicines in children. These professionals can also help make sure these medications wont interfere with other health products your child may be taking.
  • Oral decongestants are drugs from the same family as adrenaline. They are given to reduce swelling and stuffiness in the nose due to colds.


  • Antihistamines are usually used to dry up a runny nose or reduce sneezing caused by allergies.
  • They can also ease itching from things like hives, chickenpox or insect bites.
  • Antihistamines wont help someone with a cold. They can actually cause side effects, such as drowsiness, if used for the treatment of a cold.

Nasal drops or sprays

Pain and fever relievers

Natural health products

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How Does Cough Medicine Work

Cough medicines work differently depending on the type of cough medicine you are taking and the active ingredients that it contains. Most cough suppressant medications contain antitussive ingredients such as dextromethorphan. Cough suppressants like dextromethorphan work by temporarily reducing your urge to cough, so that you can feel more comfortable. Over the counter cough expectorants generally contain the active ingredient guaifenesin, which is designed to help thin out and loosen mucus in your airways so that it is easier to cough up. By clearing congestion, cough expectorants may make it feel easier to breathe.

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What Should I Do If I Think I Am Sick With Flu

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If you get sick with flu, antiviral drugs are a treatment option. Check with your doctor promptly if you are at higher risk of serious flu complications and you develop flu symptoms. Flu signs and symptoms can include feeling feverish or having a fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills, and fatigue. Your doctor may prescribe antiviral drugs to treat your flu illness.

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