By Dr. Usha Chennuru
During the pandemic, individuals must follow the necessary guidelines and safety protocols listed by the government, to contain the spread of the virus. Precautionary measures are essential to refrain from catching flu. Further on, the need to focus on immunity boosting is higher than ever before – both in terms of safe practices and dietary habits. Coronavirus can enter the body through the eyes, nose or mouth, and sore-throat can be one of the earliest symptoms of COVID-19 infection. Therefore, it is of paramount importance to always practice hand and respiratory hygiene, to kill the bacteria and germs at their outset.
Everyone should pay attention to the early signs of a sore throat and start acting immediately. Luckily, one can take enough care at home to manage a sore throat with ingredients readily available in the kitchen or at a nearby chemist. ‘Gargling’ is one such practice that, if followed regularly, can help prevent and treat minor upper respiratory tract infections that are common during flu seasons and viral outbreaks. While gargling, the saltwater flushes the toxins from your throat. Additionally, using a medicated gargle helps to kill a wide range of bacteria and viruses within a few seconds, thus giving quick relief. Everyone must imbibe the habit of ‘gargling’, making it a daily habit necessary to stay safe and healthy.
A gargle containing Povidone Iodine is powerful as it has anti-viral, anti-bacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties, consequently giving quick relief from throat pain and discomfort. Povidone Iodine is used mainly to treat skin and respiratory tract infections. While we are aware of the importance of gargling during these trying times, it is also important for us to know when and how to gargle for most effective results. The right method of using a gargle is to mix it with an equal amount of water, then tilt your head backwards and gargle for 30 seconds by swirling the liquid at the throat, finally completing the procedure by spitting out the solution. This can be repeated up to 4 times a day, or as directed by the physician/dentist.
While the best, simplest and safest solution for a sore throat is to gargle, there are also other alternatives like cough medicines, cough suppressants and throat lozenges, which can be taken alongside natural remedies like drinking warm water, or tea with honey and lemon. Since the pandemic is surging worldwide, everyone is advised to implement extra precautions to stay safe. Taking preventive measures like maintaining a healthy diet, drinking ample amounts of fluids, gargling daily, staying away from people who are sick, maintaining social distancing and utmost hygiene and getting plenty of rest is recommended. In addition, seeking timely medical assistance if any of the symptoms don’t abate, or new symptoms arise, is also recommended.
(This article is authored by Dr. Usha Chennuru, who is a Physician with over 24 years of experience in providing medical support to pharma & consumer health businesses. She is currently working as Director, Medical Services with Cipla Health Ltd. which has a host of wellness products including Cofsils Experdine Gargle which helps to prevent throat infection.)
Disclaimer: Views expressed in this article are the author’s own and Financial Express Online and Cipla Health Ltd., do not endorse any product in any way. Financial Express Online, Cipla Health Ltd., and the author disclaim all liabilities from use of the information. Readers should consult their doctor for the right use of medication to determine if it is right for their health.