Is It a Virus or a Bacteria?

When we feel ourselves coming down with a cold these days, the most important information we need to know is whether it is a Viral invasion or Bacterial. The treatment for both is similar in the beginning stages, but quite different if the illness advances.

Most Important - Antibiotics Do NOTHING to a Virus

As a matter of fact....they can even weaken your immune system and hinder its fight against the viral invader.

Second - Bacterial Colds are Much More Rare

In this day and age where we have so many antibacterial soaps and products, true bacterial invasions are seldom and the cause of most common colds.

Virus symptoms include:

  • Muscle Aches

  • Fever

  • Headache --with fever over 100 usually

  • Scratchy Throat or Sore

  • General Fatigue or Malaise

  • Constipation or Loose Stool

Bacteria symptoms include:

  • Very Painful Throat

  • Redness of Back of Throat

  • Heavy Discharge or Drainage from the Sinus

  • Phlegm that is dark or smells bad

  • Loose Stool

  • Any symptom that is wet, really red or smelly!

Now remember though, a Virus, if left untreated can turn bacterial, complicating and deepening the illness.

So here are your practical tips for the season:

  • Keep your immune system strong which means - get good sleep

  • Eat well - eating small meals and often is best

  • Drink two to four quarts of water per day

  • Take a good high potency multivitamin daily

  • Don’t work too much or over extend yourself in work or play

  • Wash your hand regularly as most of these germs enter through the eyes, nose and mouth

Here at the clinic, at season changes we prescribe one bottle of Jade Windscreen (Yu Ping Feng San) that boost the immune system and strengthens the respiratory function. The western herb equivalent would be Echinacea. Remember though, if you see Echinacea that comes with goldenseal added, it is really only for bacterial infections. Goldenseal has a strong antibiotic effect and should not be taken internally for more than 10 days.

If you DO need to take antibiotics, always take the full course as prescribed and afterwards either up your dosage of Vitamin C; add a probiotic for a few days; or eat a natural yogurt. This simple steps will help to re-establish a healthy gut and immune system.

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