As cold rolls into town, so does the flue and all its miserable symptoms. Yet, doctors and women alike have long noticed that men tend to bemoan those symptoms more than women. The phenomenon even has a name, the “man flu.”

So, are men just whiny wimps? According to analysis out of Canada, the answer is no, because respiratory illnesses may indeed hit men harder than women.

A study author Dr Kyle Sue, a clinical assistant professor in family medicine with the Health Sciences Centre at the Memorial University of Newfoundland, indicates there are already many physiologic differences between men and women, so it makes sense that we could differ in our responses to cold and flu viruses as well.

So what can you do this cold season for preventive measures against the common cold?

  • A flu vaccine is the first and most important step in protecting against the flu.
  • Wash your hands frequently during the flu season. You may use soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rinse. You can get alcohol rinses available at all our pharmacies. Remember to wash your hands for 20 seconds.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Viruses are often spread after a person touches something that is contaminated with the virus and then touches his or her eyes, nose or mouth.
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick. If your coworker is ill, steer clear of his or her sneezes and coughs. When possible, avoid shaking hands with someone who is ill with a cold. If you are caring for an ill family member, wash your hands frequently and minimize proximity to his or her face.
  • Cover your mouth or tuck it into your elbow when coughing or sneezing and encourage others to do so. Wash your hands afterwards.
  • Stay home if you have a respiratory infection when A general guideline is to stay home 24 hours
  • Get enough sleep and avoid getting “run down”.

Nothing can cure a cold, but that doesn’t mean you have to be miserable, there are some remedies that might help ease your symptoms and keep you from feeling so miserable. If you catch a cold, you can expect to be sick for one to two weeks. Besides getting enough rest, these remedies might help you feel better:

  • Stay hydrated. Water, orange juice, clear broth or warm lemon water with honey helps loosen congestion and prevents dehydration. Avoid alcohol, coffee and caffeinated sodas, which can make dehydration worse.
  • Your body needs to heal.
  • Soothe a sore throat.
    A saltwater gargle — 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon salt dissolved in a glass of warm water can temporarily relieve a sore or scratchy throat. You can also try, sore throat sprays, lozenges.
  • Combat stuffiness.
    Over-the-counter saline nasal drops and sprays can help relieve stuffiness and congestion.
  • Sip warm liquids.
    A cold remedy used in many cultures, taking in warm liquids, such as chicken soup, tea, or warm apple juice, might be soothing and might ease congestion by increasing mucus flow.
  • Add moisture to the air.
    A cool mist vaporizer or humidifier can add moisture to your home, which might help loosen congestion. Change the water daily, and clean the unit according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Don’t use steam, which hasn’t been shown to help and may cause burns.
  • Try over-the-counter (OTC) cold and cough medications.
    For adults and children older than 5, OTC decongestants, antihistamines and pain relievers might offer some symptom relief. However, they won’t prevent a cold or shorten its duration. Overuse and misuse of these medications can cause serious damage.Take medications only as directed. Some cold remedies contain multiple ingredients, such as a decongestant plus a pain reliever, so read the labels of cold medications you take to make sure you’re not taking too much of any medication.

So if you feel like you coming down with a cold, walk into your nearest Goodlife pharmacy coz we go the right thing to keep ease your symptoms.

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