How to Fight a Common Cold. Step One: Don’t go to your doctor.

Chances are, you’re going to fight a common cold this winter season. Common colds are often caused by viruses that are not as dangerous as the flu viruses. You don’t get colds from being cold.

If you do have a common cold, get plenty of rest, sleep, water, chicken soup, and cough and sneeze, but don’t spread your germs. Coughing helps clear your lungs and blowing out your nose also helps clear out your system. Saline nasal washes are great, and so are salt-water gargles for your throat. For a common cold, don’t take antibiotics. Antibiotics kill bacteria, along with the good bacterial cultures in your stomach and body. Antibiotics don’t kill viruses. Have warm tea, fresh orange juice, and eat healthy. You’ll be better in no time.

If you’re highly congested, I suggest taking Mucinex and go by its instructions. Don’t take cough suppressants. Productive coughing will help you get better sooner.

Now if you have a flu, that’s a different story.

For symptoms, treatment options, and more information, visit: http://health.nytimes.com/health/guides/disease/common-cold/overview.html

For a simple, common cold, a visit to a doctor is unnecessary. Chances are, he or she will prescribe antibiotics for you… If so, let him or her know that antibiotics don’t kill viruses. I’ve had that conversation with an ENT (ear nose throat doc) last year. He gave me antibiotics anyway. I just got better on my own.

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