Cold medications are generally prescribed to individuals suffering from the common colds, cough, bronchitis, or other respiratory conditions.
There is no good scientific evidence that cold medications reduce the severity of coughs. The cold medications do relieve the symptoms of colds and other cold-related illnesses and may relieve the pain associated with colds. There is no evidence, however, that cold medications to prevent or reduce the incidence of recurrent colds. In fact, a study by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) at the National Institutes of Health reported that there is no evidence that any cough suppressant, at least for the duration of a cold, reduces the severity of colds.
Natural cough suppressants, on the other hand, have been shown to significantly reduce the frequency and severity of colds and respiratory infections. Natural products also seem to be effective at reducing and eliminating mucus production, which helps prevent the onset of a cold. However, a recent study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine reported that natural cough suppressants were ineffective at reducing the severity of colds or controlling the occurrence of a cold. The researchers concluded that there was no strong evidence for or against the effectiveness of natural cough suppressants. This is an important issue, because a cough can be caused by more than one thing.
Cough suppressants that contain ephedra were shown to reduce the severity of coughs. These products were available in both prescription and over-the-counter versions. The studies that determined the effectiveness of these cough suppressants were conducted on animals. A report from the FDA, however, concluded that clinical trials of these products had not been conducted, so the effectiveness of these products has not been established. Ephedra users, therefore, must rely on testimonials and on their own observations to determine if these medications work.
The most commonly prescribed cold medication is paracetamol.
Paracetamol is available as a tablet or a liquid spray. When taken with food or milk, paracetamol helps to treat minor coughs. Unfortunately, studies suggest that paracetamol is ineffective at reducing the severity or frequency of colds.
Another common cold medication that is sometimes prescribed is cough suppressants containing guggulipid. and aminophylline, which act similarly to aspirin. They are effective for treating mild to moderate coughs and are often prescribed to treat acute colds, as well as to treat recurrent or acute colds and flu symptoms.
The most popular brand of cough medicine in the United States is Sudafed, which is available in both an over-the-counter and prescription form. Sudafed works by reducing coughing episodes. But it has not been approved by the FDA for treating colds. The manufacturer recommends that patients taking Sudafed take the medicine only when they experience a typical cold attack.
Because all of these cough medicines reduce the frequency and severity of colds, most doctors will not recommend taking them long term unless they absolutely have to. If you have an allergy to aspirin or any of the ingredients in these cough medicines, you should consult your doctor before starting any type of treatment, whether prescription or over-the-counter. Many people are allergic to aspirin, and they should avoid using aspirin during an allergic reaction.
Some people take their own cough medicine by snacking on cough suppressants after a meal. It is important, however, to use caution when you are taking cough medicines without consulting your doctor. If you take aspirin, always read the dosage carefully and never stop taking them abruptly. You should also never try to self medicate and should seek medical advice if you have serious allergies.