Of course it is easy for the likes of myself to blather on about staying at home taking it easy.
Being a person with many options; mostly whether I do it or not, all depending on my state of mind at that particular time, a person in the workforce does not have this luxury and in most case's pulls a sickie if he hasn't already used them up to watch sporting activities. However this is mainly for those workaholics and sadly in some cases people totally dependent on being there or being fired.
We are currently being bombarded with television adverts encouraging us to take Codral Cold Tablets so that we can continue to go to work despite suffering from coughs, colds and even influenza. The implication is that by "soldiering on" you are being brave and conquering adversity, and that Codral Cold Tablets will help you win the war. In fact, you are being stupid and anti-social. As I have written before,
"there is no evidence based research indicating that over the counter cough and cold treatments have any effect on shortening the duration of illness" they merely alleviate symptoms.
Soldiering on is very bad advice on two counts. Firstly, the symptomatic relief does nothing for the course of the viral disease, it merely allows the afflicted person to hide the illness, to function more or less normally and to infect as many healthy people as possible. Secondly, by "soldiering on" when they should really be at home looking after themselves, afflicted persons are risking secondary bacterial infections such as bronchitis, middle ear infection and even pneumonia.
If you get a cold, stay at home and be kind to yourself, loaf around, get a lot of of sleep and drink plenty of fluids (non-alcoholic), and lay off the sex. You are not doing anyone any favours by going to work, you won't be very productive and will probably infect a lot of people while you are at it. Remember that colds are spread by droplet infection emitted by coughing and sneezing, so cover your mouth and nose and definitely do not spit in public. Infection can also be spread by touch so don't use the same phone as someone who has a cold, and everyone should wash their hands a lot, especially if they use shared keyboards. If you go to your doctor, don't expect a script for antibiotics. Antibiotics are ineffective against viral illnesses, although our doctor has not learned of this scientific theory and has prescribed Amoxin a antibiotic for nearest and dearest who has symptoms as previously stated.
If you are a manager, do everyone a favour and send infected staff home, and don't expect ill people to come to work, and don't play the martyr and come in yourself if you are sick. Provide paper towels and encourage frequent hand-washing.
As I wrote above, cold and flu tablets, including Codral, do nothing to shorten the course of the disease as they only provide symptomatic relief. Because these cold treatments reduce the apparent symptoms the temptation is to behave normally. If you have a light head-cold with just a runny nose or watering eyes you probably will not do yourself any harm, but you will still pass it on to everyone else. However if you have generalised symptoms such as muscle aches, chills or chest infection you really should rest. Many studies have shown that physical stress delays healing, in other words your cold or flu will hang around longer, especially if you play sport or go to the gym. And remember lay off the sex and sleep solo.
Don't soldier on with Codral. It is unfair to yourself and to all your contacts.
BTW. Guess who has a stinker of a head cold, and guess who gave it to me. Vest.