Upper respiratory tract infections (URTIs) are undoubtedly the most common disease among humans. By extension, they can be very disturbing, frustrating, and very inconvenient. By upper respiratory tract infections, we mean mild and chronic dry coughs, sore throats, sneezing, and nasal congestion.
Whether as a monotherapy or as a comprehensive ingredient in pharmaceutical preparations, natural medicines have become the first choice treatment for upper respiratory tract infections.
The recurrence and familiarity of respiratory infections (such as the common cold) quickly make it look like a nuisance to the public rather than a threat to health. However, these infections sometimes lead to death in the elderly and immunocompromised people. Children experience 4 to 6 symptomatic colds per year on average, while adults experience 2 to 3 symptomatic colds per year.
In addition, the susceptibility of upper respiratory tract infections varies from person to person, depending on their immune system and many other factors. It can be said that viruses or bacteria are the main cause of most upper respiratory tract infections. Only in rare cases are infections caused by fungi or worms.
Typical symptoms of upper respiratory infection include cough, sore throat, runny nose, nasal congestion, headache, low-grade fever and sneezing. In the case of certain infections (such as the common cold), the patient may experience cough and runny nose for up to 14 days even after other symptoms cease.
It is worth pointing out that immunization is not feasible in controlling upper respiratory infections. In the end, the only solution involves the following options:
1. Use of natural medicine to relieve symptoms, which is very effective for lung health.
2. Adopting preventive measures and behavioral strategies in environments that have a high risk of these infections.
Therefore, it is recommended to develop the habit of washing hands frequently, exercising regularly, avoiding spraying dirt, smoke or any form of damage to indoor/outdoor air quality.
Using natural medicine for upper respiratory tract infection
Natural medicines are derived from beneficial plants. They have been used for a long time and have been evaluated as “effective and authentic” by randomized controlled trials (RCT). In view of the clinical efficacy of these traditional therapies, they can be selected or supplemented with mordern drugst, such as antihistamines and decongestants, for the treatment of upper respiratory tract infections. These ancient botanical treatments include:
Echinacea is native to North America. Its roots have attracted scientific attention because of its high bioavailability and immune activity. Today, many clinical studies and randomized trials have been conducted on its biological feasibility. Notable among these studies is the a-24 randomized trial involving more than 3000 participants. Following the success of these research results, echinacea extract is currently widely used in the United States and Europe to prevent and treat the common cold as well as enhance immunity.
These tests show that echinacea can protect against spurious symptoms of the common cold and other upper respiratory infections (URTIs). Although some of these studies have documented specific allergic reactions; however, the use of echinacea has shown no dose-dependent side effects or major drug interaction problems.
Echinacea is also available in tablet, tincture, capsule, extract, and tea forms. It must be said that the echinacea enhanced ointment is also effective for tropical treatments.
Astragalus has an important antioxidant function and provides a healthy inflammatory response to the lungs. Astragalus is also a key herb in traditional Chinese medicine. It is often mixed with other herbs to formulate the treatment of various degrees of disease, from heart and liver disease to kidney disease.
Today, in the treatment and prevention of common colds, Astragalus has had dozens or even hundreds of recovery records. As a healthy anti-inflammatory drug, Astragalus can help respiratory tissues to protect against dry air and air pollutants. Supplements such as Swisse-Natural Herbal Qingfei Tablets use Astragalus as a comprehensive ingredient, used with other vitamins and herbal extracts.
3. Bee Propolis
Propolis, also known as “bee propolis”, has natural antibacterial properties and antibacterial activity, helping to relieve mild coughs and sore throats. The material extracted from the honeycomb consists of a mixture of beeswax, resin, tree sap, plant compounds, and bee saliva. Propolis also has immunity-enhancing and anti-cancer properties. Its plant ingredients contain up to 10% essential oils and 5% bee pollen as well as hundreds of other beneficial natural compounds. Children often find propolis as a delicious choice for treating throat and oral infections.
Spirulina is a non-toxic Arthrospira bacteria. It is also a cyanobacteria and is usually a vegetarian source of protein and vitamin B12. Spirulina has effective antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects on lung health.
A 2015 study on the effect of spirulina on bronchial asthma confirmed that long-term supplementation of spirulina can help improve the treatment of bronchial asthma. The study also pointed out that when the drug is used with spirulina, the recovery rate is faster. This study and other related results explain why more and more supplements use spirulina to relieve symptoms of allergic rhinitis, such as sneezing and nasal congestion.
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