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Immune System Blog

What type of cough do you have?

by Dr. Jen Tan, on 26 January 2016, Cold & Flu

Some of the most common questions asked on our helpline each week relate to coughs.

Coughing is a natural body reflex and we have all experienced this symptom. All of us will have one or two normal coughs a day to help clear the throat and respiratory passages – but there are many health conditions giving rise to this symptom. So when does your cough need attention? What should you look out for? What types of cough are there? How can you tell each apart?

Continue reading >

4 natural remedies for the common cold

by Dr. Jen Tan, on 11 January 2016, Cold & Flu

Ahhh – the common cold.

Even the sound of it can strike fear into the most fearsome man (or woman!). These are the most frequent infections we face and can wreak havoc on even the most healthy specimen.

It is estimated that over 200 types of viruses can cause the common cold. You just need a relatively small amount of one type to become ill. Viruses start by invading the tissues in the nose and back of the throat, giving rise to familiar symptoms such as runny nose, sore throats, coughing and sneezing. Continue reading >

Constant blocked nose

by Dr. Jen Tan, on 7 January 2016, Blocked Nose

We all know the feeling of having a blocked nose during a cold, but when we have a blocked nose without a cold in sight we can begin to wonder just when we are going to be able to breathe easily again. Constantly having a blocked nose can not only be irritating and unpleasant, but it can also be difficult to know the best way to tackle the problem.

Although a blocked nose with a cold can feel as if it is going on forever, it is not until a symptom has lasted for 12 weeks that it can be defined as ‘chronic’. Sometimes a constant or chronic blocked nose is termed as sinusitis.

It is unlikely that a viral-induced blocked nose is going to last this long, so we have to look to other reasons why your nose may be blocked. Continue reading >

Cold Sore Triggers

by Dr. Jen Tan, on 16 December 2015, cold sores

Cold sores are common. Research shows that the majority of the adult population carries the virus. But, not everyone experiences cold sores. So, what triggers a cold sore? Why do some people carrying the virus develop this painful condition, whereas others don’t?

The main answers lie with your immune system, your diet and the presence of external factors which may damage the skin around your nose and mouth allowing a cold sore to develop. Continue reading >

Tips to tackle a winter stomach bug

by Dr. Jen Tan, on 3 December 2015, Immune System
winter bug.fw

The dreaded winter stomach bug can cause you to spend several days locked in the bathroom with vomiting and diarrhoeal symptoms, feeling pretty dreadful and drained.

People telling you that it is a short-lived bug which should only last a few days is unlikely to give you immense comfort at the time, but focus on minimising how badly the symptoms affect you and you will soon be fighting fit again.

These are our top 5 tips for tackling this bug. Continue reading >