Kind, respectful care - while promoting dignity and independence

What to do with coughs, colds, and feeling miserable

What To Do With Coughs, Colds, And Feeling Miserable

What to do with coughs, colds, and feeling miserable


In the last few weeks, we have seen a surge in upper respiratory tract infections. Quite a few residents have been unwell with coughs, fevers, tiredness, and body aches. It has also been encouraging to see how many residents have come to me for a flu injection. It is not too late! Get the flu vaccine from your pharmacy (medical aid will cover it) and bring it to the clinic in the care centre. We’ll gladly help you.

What is making you sick?

Viruses cause most of these infections:

  • colds or flu
  • runny nose (even if the mucus is thick, yellow, or green)
  • most sore throats
  • most sinusitis
  • most bronchitis (chest cold), cough (even if the mucus is thick, yellow, or green)

Do I need an antibiotic?

Antibiotics are only needed for treating certain infections caused by bacteria. Antibiotics do not work on viruses & will not make you feel better if you have a virus. Remember, any time antibiotics are used, they can cause side effects!

Allergic reactions

Antibiotics disturb the microbiome in our gut and can cause an imbalance between good and bad bacteria. This can result in diarrhea, and even Clostridium difficile diarrhea (which can be life-threatening).

Antibiotic resistance

Bacterial resistance continues, in large part because of the overuse and misuse of antibiotics.

What can you do?

  • Do your best to stay healthy – and keep others healthy.
  • Get the recommended vaccines.
  • Stay at home when you are sick.
  • Cover your mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing.
  • Clean hands
  • Avoid close contact with people who have colds or respiratory tract infections.

If you do feel unwell…

  • Rest
  • Fluids
  • Over the counter treatment for relief of symptoms

If you need antibiotics, take them exactly as prescribed. Take them exactly as your doctor tells you. Do not share your antibiotics with others. Complete the full course of treatment.

– Sr. Erika

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