The People's Perspective on Medicine
Ripe elderberries, also known as Sambucus berries, growing on a shrub
Alternative Health

How Can You Find Natural Cough Medicine That Works?

A search for a natural cough medicine from Germany turned up several herbs that can be helpful. Have you tried elderberry, thyme or Andrographis?

Man uses a nasal spray for treatment
Colds

How to Beat Nose Spray Dependence One Nostril at a Time

Decongestant nasal sprays such as Afrin or Sinex can lead to rebound congestion if they are overused. How can you overcome such nose spray dependence?

girl with cold or flu blowing her nose into a tissue
Colds

Vitamin C and the Common Cold: Will Ascorbic Acid Help?

Why does the medical establishment have such antipathy to ascorbic acid against the common cold. You would think vitamin C was worthless. It is essential!

Cod Liver Oil Omega 3 Gel Capsules
Acid Reflux

What Happened to Cod Liver Oil as a Home Remedy?

A reader who remembers home remedies of long ago wonders what happened to cod liver oil. Although doctors no longer prescribe it, people still take it.

colicky baby crying in his crib
Colds

Did the Maker Recall Ibuprofen for Your Baby?

Dosage variation prompted a manufacturer to recall ibuprofen for treating infants' fevers.

child and medicine spoon
Alternative Health

Terpin Hydrate Helped World War I Veteran

What do you do for a cough? Do you find that dextromethorphan (the DM in OTC cough meds) tastes terrible? Have you ever found that terpin hydrate helped?

Jar of Vicks VapoRub
Arthritis

Should You Pay Less for Vicks VapoRub®?

An irate reader discovered that a favorite rub now contains a synthetic ingredient instead of natural essential oil. Should we pay less for Vicks VapoRub?

little girl with a cold sneezing and blowing her nose
Colds

How to Take Care of Kids with Colds

Parents should be wary of using OTC medicines to treat kids with colds. Some home remedies, such as honey for coughs, may be more helpful.

security line at an airport showing metal detectors
Colds

Security Line Is the Germiest Spot in the Airport

Trays in the security line at the airport may be handled by hundreds of people an hour. A study shows they are loaded with viruses, so wash your hands before and after screening.

a hospital emergency room entrance
Colds

Beware Unnecessary Antibiotics from Urgent Care Centers

Have you ever been given a prescription for a cold or the flu? Unnecessary antibiotic prescriptions are common, especially at urgent care centers. Read Joe's personal tale of woe and intrigue.

drugstore shelves with over the counter (OTC) pain relief products.
Colds

Overdosing on Acetaminophen in Cold and Flu Remedies

Did you have a cold this year? What did you take for sniffles, sneezes, congestion and fever? Many OTC cold and flu remedies contain APAP. Were you careful to avoid overdosing on acetaminophen?

Onion and onion slices on wooden cutting board.
Colds

Have You Tried Onion Syrup to Calm a Cough?

Simmering onions in sweet water to make onion syrup can offer relief for a persistent cough. Other remedies include ginger, thyme and eucalyptus.

airplane passengers
Colds

Will You Catch a Cold on Your Next Flight?

You might be less likely to catch a cold while flying than you think. Still, there are some precautions that are wise to follow.

Woman wearing surgical facemask and coughing into her hand
Colds

Will Wearing a Face Mask Protect Against the Flu?

Have you ever worn a surgical mask to avoid the flu? If not, why not? Do you wash your hands? Wearing a face mask AND washing your hands is your best protection.

Thymus citriodorus (Lemon thyme or Citrus thyme) in the garden
Colds

Spices for Unexpected Cough and Cold Relief

Sage, thyme and ginger can offer surprising cough and cold relief.

a female barista with a coffee in a carry out cup
Colds

Should You Worry About Germs on Your Coffee Cup Lid?

Are you someone who cares about germs or are you a bring-them-on kind of person? What about germs on your coffee cup lid? People get worked up about this!

a child taking cough syrup
Colds

How to Make Your Own Cough Syrup

It is not difficult to make your own all-natural cough syrup at home using thyme, lemon and honey.

airplane passengers
Colds

Why You Should Leave the Vent On in an Airplane

Keeping the vent above your seat on so air can circulate in your space creates turbulence that discourages viruses from landing.

little girl with a cold sneezing and blowing her nose
Colds

Extra Vitamin D No Benefit for Kids with Colds

A placebo controlled Canadian study found that extra vitamin D was no better than the standard amount for preventing winter colds in kids.

Vitamin D3 gel capsules
Colds

Is Vitamin D Good for Colds? Will it Battle the Flu?

The vitamin wars continue. Many health professionals say vitamins are a waste of money. Is vitamin D good for colds? What does the latest research conclude?