by Kerry Brotchie, Pharmacist
It might start with a scratch in the throat, a sneeze or a sniff of the nose, before you know it your head is thumping, your nose is blocked and it sounds like you are coughing up a lung - the dreaded cold has struck again! If you have a sudden fever, body aches, feel extremely weak and tired you may have the flu.
On average adults can expect to get 2 to 4 colds every year, children as many as 5 to 10 (due to their lack of immunity to many cold viruses).
Usually cold symptoms get better with rest and fluids, but sometimes a little bit of help is needed. There are many products available in pharmacies to help reduce the symptoms of a cold. A cold and flu tablet may not always be the best treatment so check with our knowledgeable pharmacy staff to ensure you receive the best treatment for you. Not all products are suitable for all people so always check if you take any medications or have a health condition like diabetes, epilepsy or depression.
As well as improving cold and flu symptoms, there are some great immune boosting herbs and vitamins that can hasten your recovery and/or prevent you from developing another cold.
Cold and flu viruses are spread through air droplets when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Did you know that some viruses can live on indoor surfaces for more than 7 days! Luckily, their ability to cause an infection reduces rapidly and often they don’t survive for longer than 24hrs.
BUT…. Imagine someone sneezes on an elevator button or an office phone that you then use…. Eeek! The best way to avoid catching a cold or flu is to wash your hands often and to also get a flu vaccine.
Flu vaccines cover the four most virulent strains of the flu virus. These change constantly which is why we need a new vaccine every year.
The flu season in Australia generally runs from June to September, peaking in August. Most people develop immunity two weeks after having their flu shot. The flu vaccine provides 3 to 4 months of protection.
Ultimately being vaccinated at any time is better than not at all, so if you haven’t had your shot yet come and see our experienced staff at Community Care Chemist for your shot today - no prescription required.