Pfizer Consumer Healthcare sponsored this post, but all opinions are my own.
I mentioned awhile back that I started this year off with a brutal case of pneumonia – and a fun little bout of bronchitis to go along with it! During that month-long nightmare, I heard more random myths about sickness than I ever care to recall.
Put this cotton ball in your ear, Chelsea. You'll feel better in the morning.
Exercising while you're sick will weaken your body's ability to fight it off.
Hang garlic from your doorknob!
I don't mean to offend anyone, of course. Believe me, I get all stoked on my essential oils and natural solutions. That being said, I'm also a woman of science and I understand some of the biology of germs. Our family has dealt with enough illness at this point. When we get sick now, WE FIGHT BACK. Guns blazing. All out war on that yickiness. So I like to be informed and, well, not waste my time on ineffective solutions.
We're partnering with Advil® Cold & Sinus, the #1 pharmacist recommended brand to treat cold and flu symptoms. Two symptoms that I used to have to hassle with separately – pain and a cloggy head – both can now be relieved with Advil® Cold and Sinus, which combines Advil® – the number-one selling pain reliever – and a powerful decongestant. BOOM. Multiple symptoms, relieved. If you need relief fast (like if you happen to juggle kids and work and don't have time to get sick right now), ask for it at the pharmacy counter!
A recent study conducted by Advil® found that more Americans ages 18-24 seek advice from their parents than from the doctor, probably because parents are typically SO much more accessible than healthcare providers. The problem with that is that parents – as totally genius as we are – aren't always super-well-informed about health issues. So I interviewed Registered Pharmacist and Health Expert Jim Morelli to set the record straight on some of the most common myths and head-scratchers I've encountered in the health world. Here's what he had to say.
It's been down pouring a TON lately in San Diego! Can you really get sick just from standing in the rain?
“No and yes,” Jim said. He explained that you have to actually be infected with a cold or flu in order to get sick, but if the rain causes you to shiver uncomfortably you could stress your immune system, which makes you more susceptible to a virus infection.
Jim actually noted that one of his favorite pastimes is running during a warm rain.
Having lived in Maui for four years as a kid, I can totally relate!
Why do I wake up feeling stuffy in the morning, but get better as the day goes on?
Jim explained that mucus becomes thicker when we lay flat since it doesn't have the assistance of gravity pulling it downward. It could also be aggravated by dry air inside our home. Mold spores and other allergens can contribute as well, so it's a good idea to wash bedding in the hottest cycle possible – with unscented laundry detergent – and use multiple pillows to prop your head up while you sleep.
My kids want ice cream to ease a sore throat, but my mom says we should avoid dairy when sick. Is it true that milk products create more phlegm?
My kids are cheering over this one – the pharmacist gave me the go-ahead to give them all the dairy they want. Recent studies have shown that dairy ingestion does NOT increase the amount of phlegm. That being said, clear fluids will hydrate best and dairy can irritate an upset stomach, so don't overdo it.
Has your family been battling a bunch of bugs this season? You can read even more about health care solutions and Advil's products over on the Advil Facebook page!
What's the biggest health myth you've heard?