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Upper Respiratory Tract Infection

Upper respiratory tract infections (URTI) are termed as infections related to nose, sinuses and throat. Infections of the airways and lungs come under lower respiratory tract infections (LRTI). URTI or LRTI are usually caused by viruses but can also be caused by bacteria. Children are more affected than adults as their body is under the process of building immunity or resistance to many viruses as they grow up.

How does it spread?

The germs in URTI are spread in different ways.

  • If you have an infection for example common cold, the droplets of fluid containing the virus are launched into the air whenever the infected person sneezes or coughs. If these are inhaled by someone sitting close to the infected individual, they too can get infected. This is termed as air-borne transfer.
  • Infection can spread through indirect contact also. For example a person suffering from cold touches his nose or eyes and then touches any object or surface, the virus can be passed to someone else when they touch that object or surface.
  • When an infected individual kisses a non-infected person or even if they share drinks, the infection can be passed on to a non-infected individual through the saliva.

The best way to prevent the spread of these infections is by maintaining good hygiene, such as regularly washing hands, using sanitizer, covering the mouth or nose while coughing or sneezing, using disposable tissues after using them to clean the nose and then immediately sanitizing the hands.

The most common URTI’s include:

  1. Common Cold: Common cold tends to be more prevalent in winter and monsoon. Factors that lead to cold infections may be over-crowding, sudden exposure, variations in weather conditions, smoke, dust, odours or pre-existing disorders like allergies, adenoid growth, chronic sinusitis, septic tonsillitis or any related infection of the pharynx.
  2. Tonsillitis: Inflammation of the tonsils
  3. Sinusitis: Inflammation of the sinuses
  4. Laryngitis: Infection of the larynx which is also known as the voice box
  5. Flu

Signs and Symptoms:

  • A cold attack is often sudden. It presents with chills, body aches or pains, low grade fevers, throat irritation and frequent sneezing. Cough is the most common symptom accompanied with cold.
  • The nasal discharge may initially be watery and sometimes excoriating. When the discharges turn ripe it becomes thick and purulent.
  • As the cold progresses, one’s sense of smell and taste may get affected. The eyes too may water profusely just like when one chops an onion.
  • There could be stuffy nose or stopped up feeling because of blocked nose.
  • There could be persistent headache due to congestion caused due to sinusitis.

Healing with Homoeopathy

  • Conventional medicine used for URTI’s generally give antibiotics and anti-inflammatory which would suppress the symptoms and would provide temporary relief. The attack could come on anytime again when the person would come in contact with an infected individual. Hence, the immunity of the patient should be treated rather than just treating the symptoms.
  • Homoeopathy would help to heal in the gentlest way without having any side effects and would help to boost the immunity of the individual.
  • Homoeopathic medicines follow a curative rather than a suppressive approach while treating URTI.
  • Homeopathy focuses on the patient as a person and the pathological condition too.
  • Homoeopathy is non-addictive and has zero side-effects.
  • Homeopathic medicines help to reduce the frequency and intensity of the episodes and also help to eliminate the use of conventional medicines which have known side-effects.
  • Homoeopathy helps to improve the health related quality of life.

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