Probably, there is not a single person who would never have been sick with colds in his life, even if in his childhood. Therefore, no person is not worried about what to take for a cold.
Catarrhal diseases can have different names, but they are based on one cause. It is the infection of various parts of the body with pathogens. These microorganisms are divided into two main categories: bacteria and viruses.
Treatment of acute respiratory diseases can be both symptomatic, aimed at alleviating the manifestations of the disease, and etiological, aimed at eliminating the cause of the disease.
What diseases are caused by viruses? First of all these are influenza and ARVI.
The term ARVI (acute respiratory viral infection) means various infections caused by viruses that do not belong to the pathogens of influenza.
These viruses include:
- parainfluenza viruses,
- respiratory syncytial viruses.
Also, respiratory symptoms are typical of some other viral diseases:
- whooping cough.
However, it is not customary to refer to viral respiratory diseases.
Symptoms of diseases caused by different types of viruses often differ little from each other. You can usually determine the type of disease only by identifying the type of pathogen, which is not always easy.
Usually, ARVI is characterized by symptoms such as cough, runny nose, fever, sore throat, headaches, frequent sneezing. Sometimes symptoms may be accompanied by signs of intoxication like nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.
The majority of specialists adhere to the opinion that for people with normal immunity in the treatment of ARVI no antiviral drugs are needed. With the correct approach to their treatment, these diseases pass independently and do not cause any complications. Therefore, the treatment of these diseases is mostly symptomatic.
Treatment for diseases such as acute respiratory viral infection compliance with bed rest, creating normal conditions for recovery – the absence of drafts, hypothermia of the body. It is also necessary to drink plenty of liquid, for example, tea with lemon. The intake of vitamins and antioxidants also helps in recovery. To treat the cold, you can use anti-inflammatory or nose-clearing drops. For the treatment of the bronchi and throat use inflammatory inhalation-reducing inhalations based on infusions of herbs. Full nutrition is also an important element of therapy.
Symptoms of influenza often differ from those of other viral respiratory diseases. However, this difference cannot always be shown. Often, in the case of high immunity or a weakened type of virus, the symptoms of influenza practically do not differ from the symptoms of ARVI. But there are several basic signs on which it is necessary to pay attention.
First of all, most types of influenza are characterized by a very high temperature. The temperature usually rises to a high level in a short period.
Also with the flu, there is such a characteristic symptom as implicitly expressed pain in the muscles of the body, especially in the limbs (aches). This sign can be indicative of both the early stage of the disease, appearing a few hours before the temperature rises, and for a period when the temperature has already risen.
Influenza, unlike ARVI, is dangerous for its complications affecting other organs, especially heart, kidneys, lungs, liver. Very dangerous is toxic flu, in which death from the intoxication of the body is possible.
Influenza is usually transmitted by airborne droplets, from sick to healthy people. The influenza virus is sufficiently resistant to external influences and can persist for a long time in the external environment. The incubation period of the disease is usually from several hours to several days.
There are several varieties of the influenza virus. And not all drugs are able to affect all these types. Treatment of influenza is mostly symptomatic. Admission of antiviral drugs for influenza is indicated in case of severe course of the disease, as well as with weakened immunity. It can be both etiotropic drugs, and stimulants of immunity. Due to their use, it is often possible to shorten the duration of the disease and avoid possible serious complications.
Unlike diseases caused by bacteria, viruses that enter the body attack directly human cells. The virus is usually very simple. As a rule, it is a single DNA molecule, and sometimes a simpler RNA molecule containing genetic information.
Viruses can be built into the genetic apparatus of cells, and reconfigure it to release their own copies. Without the help of cells from other organisms, viruses cannot reproduce.
Antiviral drugs directed specifically to fight viruses and can be divided into four main groups:
- immunostimulators and inducers of interferon;
- preparations containing interferon;
- antiviral drugs of direct action (etiotropic).
There are many antiviral drugs that belong to different groups and the most effective drug among them is not easy to allocate.
It is necessary to take into account that it is essential to start antiviral therapy with medicines as early as possible, at the first signs of the disease. Otherwise, treatment will not be effective.
Also, before initiating treatment with antiviral drugs, you should make sure that the respiratory disease is caused by viruses, not bacteria. Otherwise, antiviral therapy will be completely useless.