Common Cold – Is Rest Best?

To treat or not to treat a cold, that's the big question

Wiping nose

Akash visits his doctor for a straight case of a wretched cold attack. He’s already prescribed pills by his doctor, but they seem to have no effect. The third visit proves more complex for the patient as the doctor advises him to take a hot bath, throw open the windows and stand in the draft. Confused by his doctor’s prescription, Akash is amused. He says: “But, this would lead to pneumonia!” The doctor replies patiently, “I know. I know. But, I can cure pneumonia.”

You would not be wrong to think that the doctor was, perhaps, out of his mind to talk like that. Thankfully, it’s only a joke and if a doctor actually said that, to you, you should know it’s time to switch to another doctor!

But, this is also precisely what a “bad” cold – because, no cold is “good” – poses, a confounding puzzle for both doctor and patient.

Anyone who claims that s/he has not suffered from cold is either a hypocrite, or an extremely fit individual. This is because cold is one ailment that takes little time to catch on; it also takes up a frustratingly debilitating toll to get over. The common cold has not got its name for no reason. But, where the commonality of the illness is obvious, its treatment continues to elude precision.

Relief is no relief

A common cold is often accompanied by body pain, feverish symptoms, and sore throat compounded by cough. Medical treatment becomes complex with painkillers making the patient more weak and cough syrups, or expectorants, actually providing no more than temporary relief.

At the end of the day, rather than creating a commixture of available cold remedies over-the-counter [OTC], it would seem prudent advice to actually slow down. You need not reach the dead end, but a break would not be a bad idea, after all.

The common cold catches with it a rather embedded notion — that a cold requires no special break from work, like other illnesses. Given the alternative of working oneself to the brink of more serious and severe maladies, a break from work seems wise to follow.

Take it easy

Apart from resting and laying low for a day or two, sipping fruit juices at regular intervals will help revive your weakened spirits. Needless to mention, avoiding heavy, oily and fried foods would help immensely to make a quick recovery.

Take natural fruits and fruit juices – not essences – to tide over cold and ensure that the body also gets necessary nutrients for a return to healthy ways.

A break from routine work is not only beneficial, but also mood-elevating. The most important point, of course, is – rather than laying down the entire work staff by spreading the irritating cold virus, it would be prudent to stay at home.

This way you would “win” two birds with one stone – staying in your boss’s good books, while earning that much-needed rest!

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Sreelata Yellamrazu
Sreelata S Yellamrazu, a management graduate, is a sports columnist. She hopes her writing proves liberating for her, and also provides a voice for important life issues - especially young minds.


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