Colds and Antibiotics

December 15, 2016

Well it's Texas and it's winter and you know what that means!  It means warm weather one day, cold weather the next, foggy another day and lets not forget rainy or sleeting the day after that!   Add to that the busy holidays and being around lots of friends and family in close quarters and it's a prime season for colds. 


The common cold generally consists of a runny nose, coughing, sore throat and sneezing.  These symptoms usually last about two weeks.  Generally you won't see a fever with a cold...that is usually a symptom of a more severe virus and one that we would recommend calling the office or bringing in your child so we can take a look.


A cold is caused by a virus, so the best "medicine" is rest, over-the-counter medication, old-fashioned chicken soup and extra love.  Because the cold comes from a virus, antibiotics will not help it get better.  A runny nose or cold will almost always get better on its own, so it's better not to use antibiotics until they are needed.  Taking antibiotics when they aren't necessary generally causes other issues like vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain and rashes.  Additionally, the more a person uses antibiotics, the more immune their body becomes to them and they aren't helpful when they really are necessary for treatment.  Always feel free to discuss the different treatment options with your physician so that we can educate you on the various methods that are helpful for the patient's diagnosed illness.


As for the common cold, the best way to prevent getting a cold is hand hygiene.  Wash those hands often!


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