Cold and flu – Myths gone viral!

There are a lot of myths surrounding the common cold and influenza. While most of them are not true, some of the myths are actually true, now that we have science to prove it.

  • I will get the flu if I take the flu vaccine

    This is not true. How can you get the flu from the vaccine when it contains dead viruses? You may develop a sore arm and a slight body pain and a mild fever, but all this is because your body is building up the antibodies it requires to fight off future viral infections.

  • Antibiotics will help in curing my cold

    Antibiotics are for bacteria. Flu is caused by a virus. These are two completely different kinds of germs and hence taking an antibiotic for a cold will not help you in any way.

  • I will catch a cold if I get wet in the rain or leave my hair wet for long

    Getting wet in the rain or leaving your hair wet for long may make you feel cold, but you will definitely not catch a cold. Common cold or flu results when the virus enters your body. So unless you have been around a person who is infected, there is no way you yourself will get the virus into your body.

  • Too much stress will make me ill

    Stress per se doesn’t cause the flu. The virus does that. Stressed out people have weak immune systems that may make them easily susceptible to the flu virus than others. The recovery may also take longer in cases of people who have chronic stress.

  • Vitamin C prevents cold

    Many people swear by this myth. Though there is nothing to prove it wrong, there have been no conclusive evidences in support of it either.

  • Cold weather causes the flu

    It does not. The number of people falling prey to the flu virus is high in these months though. That may be because the cold causes us all to stay cooped up inside, thus spreading the virus faster.

  • Chicken soup is good for flu

    What our grandmothers told us, science is now accepting as a fact. Chicken soup consist a lot of anti-inflammatory properties that is great for cold. It also acts as a soothing relief for sore throat.

  • It's nothing serious, just the flu

    Most people recover from the flu in about 7 to 14 days with very little medicines. Though most cases are mild, the flu does have serious complications too. Pneumonia, bronchitis, sinus infections, and ear infections are examples of flu-related complications. The flu can also make chronic health problems worse. For example, people with asthma may experience asthma attacks while they have the flu, and people with chronic congestive heart failure may find that the flu worsens this condition.

  • Do not drink cold milk or have ice-creams when you have the flu

    This is not needed in most of the cases. Cold products do no harm to the body. In fact the cold milk or ice-cream may be soothing for your throat.

  • I do not need to get vaccinated every year

    The virus that causes flu keeps changing and evolving. So the immunity that your body built up last year when you had the flu, will not be good enough for the new strain going around this year. Hence it is very essential to get vaccinated regularly.

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