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"Murphy was an optimist!"

Don’t treat the symptoms September 2, 2006 2:09 pm

Posted by Doug McCaughan in : Daily Life, Evan, Family, Health, Of Being Dad
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Our society has a propensity to treat symptoms and not problems. Our commercials promote the quick fix. The prevalent attitudes toward recycling and environment show a tendency for thinking only about now. Even our government acts as if tomorrow does not matter.

Ocean Nasal Mist

A runny nose is a symptom, not the problem; however, our doctors are quick with antibiotics, and mothers rush to the pharmacy for an antihistamine. The runny nose is your body’s attempt to fix a problem. By drying up the symptom, we deminish the body’s natural ability to fight the problem.

Nose sprays are very effective at clearing up a running nose or opening blocked sinuses. When you feel congested there is nothing more relieving than to use some 4 Way Nasal Decongestant and moments later blow everything out to be able to breathe again. Nose sprays are also addictive. If you use too much, days after your cold is gone you can find yourself needing the nasal spray just to breathe. I try to limit myself to one squirt from a nasal spray per day and focus instead on a saline nasal spray. Ocean (manufacturer site) is a great product! The saline nasal spray keeps your nasal passages moisturized and helps minimize nasty stuff from coming out of your nose. Saline nasal sprays are not medicine like 4 Way or Afrin but a natural way to help your nose.

Evan has been fighting a cold and hates having his nose wiped. On a whim, I started giving him minor squirts of Ocean after cleaning his nose. He liked it! So much in fact that he fights the nose wipe less and asks for the Ocean. He helps me hold the bottle, leans his little head forward, directs it to the nostril, and smiles big when I squirt then he moves it to the other nostril and smiles more. Kids are a riot! Oh, and his nose is better for it.

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Comments»

1. LissaKay - September 3, 2006

The problem with antibiotics for a cold is that they are totally ineffective. Colds are caused by viruses (virii?) Antibiotics are effective only against bacteria. Over-use of antibiotics has led to the nightmare of drug resistant bugs developing. There are strains of strep that cannot be killed by anything short of a nuclear blast. Look up “nosocomial” for a hair-raising revelation about our vaunted hospital systems.

No one ever died from a cold. Yes, they are annoying as all heck, but they are self-limiting and mild. However, they can become problematic if they turn into a sinus infection, bronchitis, and/or pneumonia … particularly in the elderly, very young children and the those who are immunosuppressed or have other serious health problems.

Saline nasal sprays are good, so is chicken soup. Rest, hot showers, lots of liquids. I have used Zicam Cold Remedy with some good results for mild colds. When my colds get really bad, I do turn to decongestants just so I can breathe again. They took the one that worked best for me off the market …the chemical name is a mile long, but it went under the brand of Entex. Wonderful stuff … but apparently some people had problems with it.

Allergies are an entirely different matter. That is not your body correcting something that is wrong … like fighting a virus or bacteria. Allergies is the body getting all confused, mistaking harmless agents for harmful ones … like thinking mold spores are bacteria. Thus it rallies the defenses just as if there were a bug to fight off. Antihistamines to correct these symptoms is not necessarily a bad thing. My allergies have gotten so bad at times, bronchitis and pneumonia have resulted. Interestingly, I have had a near total remission of my biannual (spring and autumn) allergy attacks since I have been taking the flu vaccine. Yeah .. it don’t make no sense, but there you go.

2. djuggler - September 3, 2006

I think that is the best explanation of alleries I have ever heard! And fantastic comment!

3. Dean - September 4, 2006

That is why I became a chiropractor … enhance the body’s natural ability to heal itself. I have patients who come at the initial onset of a cold and it resolves so much faster with fewer missed days of work or school. Our friend’s son is almost completely resolved of any asthma symptoms since starting chiropractic care, going from three attacks a week to one or two a year (that success is why he became a chiropractor).

And you are so right about the American quick-fix mentality. People look at the body as this fragile thing, but it is designed to heal itself and to be healthy (unlike cars and lightbulbs that are designed to break down and burn out). We have this incredible healing power within ourselves and I try to get my patients to embrace this and let the body present itself in the manner it was designed. From my perspective, natural is always better. Good job on teaching Evan early and resisting the urge to go for a shotgun to kill a fly.

4. AT - September 5, 2006

Horrible memories rise of a night with a very young MastaG fighting me tooth and nail over some kind of nasal spray that would help the screaming, writhing infant breath through his nose for the five minutes it would take his pacifier to lull him to sleep.
And people ask why we don’t have more kids…


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