Let’s try to discover it together, starting first from the pathology. The cold is a disorder that affects the upper respiratory tract, especially the nasal mucosa and is characterized by multiple symptoms. The main causes are of infectious origin, in particular viral and to a lesser extent bacterial; an additional cause that can determine the symptomatology of the cold is the allergy. Precisely from the symptomatology we must start to introduce those that are the drugs usable for the cold. In reality there is no better cold medicine but there are many drugs that go to act, with different mechanisms, on the cohort of cold symptoms. So the treatment is nothing more than support for the reduction of symptoms that include nasal congestion, rhinorrhoea, pain and / or throat burning, palatal itching and throat, all generally accompanied by sneezing. These symptoms can last up to 10 days, with varying intensity and appearance depending on the predisposition of the subject as well as the presence of other diseases such as rhinitis, asthma, bronchitis and allergy. Below we will list those that are the main drugs for the treatment of cold symptoms: Antipyretics and analgesics such as paracetamol reduce fever, joint pain, sore throat and headache. They can be taken by both children and adults. There are several pharmaceutical forms based on paracetamol, such as tablets, sachets, suppositories and syrups. In addition there are many pharmaceutical formulations on the market that see the association with decongestants, antihistamines and antioxidants. It is important to underline some fundamental points concerning this widely used principle. Paracetamol has a mild anti-inflammatory action and consequently does not contribute to the reduction of edema affecting the nasal mucosa, ie it does not reduce nasal congestion and is also less effective in cases of inflamed and enlarged throat, but has an important analgesic action. Paracetamol is present in several over-the-counter drugs that have different trade names so you should always read carefully the active ingredient of the drug that is taken to avoid overdosing. Lastly, the maximum dose of paracetamol for an adult is 3 grams per day, considering an administration for oral use. For the treatment of fever in the adult subject is enough to use 500mg tablets, one every 6 hours, increasing the frequency of intake to 1 tablet every 4 hours, in case of high fever or in the case of subjects with a higher body weight to the norm. The last clarification regarding paracetamol is that this has a variable pharmacokinetic rectally, in fact it results to have an absorption of about 50% less than the same dose orally. This is why both the 500mg oral formulation and the 1000mg formulation in suppositories are self-medication drugs and the two formulations in terms of absorption of the active ingredient are almost equally considered equal. Most of the medicines containing paracetamol can be found on this link on our online shop.
Anti-inflammatories such as ibuprofen, naproxen and acetylsalicylic acid, reduce fever, joint pain, nasal congestion, headache and pharyngitis. Ibuprofen can also be used in the pediatric population, usually in the form of syrups or suppositories. It represents the first choice in the treatment of fever, after paracetamol and is effective in most of the symptoms from cooling starting from 200mg for adults. It is present in various associations with decongestants and antihistamines. Naproxen is indicated from 5 years of age and is not the first choice of treatment in the symptomatology of the cold in both adults and children, as it is mainly indicated for rheumatoid arthritis, gout, neuralgia, joint pain, headaches and sore teeth. Acetylsalicylic acid has unique anti-inflammatory properties, reduces sore throat, fever and nasal congestion. It is not indicated in children under the age of 12. It is generally associated with Vitamin C, to promote immune defenses. It is more gastro-resistant than the other anti-inflammatory drugs so it is recommended to take it on a full stomach, it has some interactions with other drugs, but it is still very effective in reducing inflammation characterized by edema, swelling and redness. Most anti-inflammatory drugs and their technical data sheets are available at this link on our online shop.
Mucolytics and expectorants, such as ambroxol, sobrerol, acetylcysteine, carbocisteine and guaifenesin. These drugs, if on the one hand can promote the elimination of excess mucus through the breaking of details of chemical bonds present in the mucus, making it less viscous and more disposable, on the other hand, of important characteristics not to be underestimated. In fact, we must first of all point out how the mucus and the consequent cough represent the important forms of defense that our organism implements to eliminate the various pathogenic organisms responsible for infections and consequent inflammation. In particular, attention must be paid to the pediatric population, for whom the effectiveness of mucolytics has not yet been investigated and may also represent a risk of suffocation. Most of the mucolytics are contraindicated in children under 2 years and for some molecules the therapeutic indication is from 6 years or 12 years. The other most vulnerable subjects are the elderly, the chronic bronchitics, the asthmatic subjects and the enticed subjects. For all of these, mucolytics should be used with particular caution as they can exacerbate some symptoms leading to bronchospasm and airway obstruction. It is therefore advisable to follow the doctor’s advice and monitor these subjects in case of therapy with mucolytic drugs. To find out more about the main mucolytic and expectorant drugs, follow the link below.
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