Most of us can expect to get a cough or cold sometime during the year, particularly through Fall and Winter. While it’s just fine to try to battle your illness on your own, if you can’t quite get rid of your cough or cold symptoms over time, it’s time to see the doctor.
If you are taking over-the-counter medications, like cough syrup, Sudafed, etc., and your cough or cold is remaining persistent anyhow, time to see the doctor.
If you have your cough or cold for more than a week, or if they are accompanied by fever, headaches, diarrhea, or vomiting, you should see the doctor, because you could likely have picked up more than one illness due to your immune system trying to battle the cough or cold germs.
If you cannot sleep at night, hear rattling in your chest, or are coughing so much you are worried you may throw your back out, you should see the doctor.
If the snot coming out of your nose is green or yellow, rather than clear, it is a sign of bacteria, and possibly Bronchitis or other incoming illness, so you should get to the doctor.
If you have asthma, COPD, or other breathing issues and you have a cough or cold, get to the doctor right away.
If you have a cough or cold and you are a smoker, you can aggravate the cold or cough into Bronchitis, so you should try to cut back on smoking and see your doctor to better knock out your symptoms because smokers often get Bronchitis from a simple cold or cough.
If you have swollen lymph nodes or severe ear pain in addition to your cough or cold, get to your doctor.
If you are having severe reactions to the medications you have been taking to try to battle your cough or cold, such as dizziness, nausea, sleeplessness, vomiting, or diarrhea, you may be doing yourself more harm than good, so you should see your doctor.
If your eyes are crusty, red, swollen, and oozing mucous, your virus may be spreading, and your ears could be next, so see the doctor for aide.
Basically, if your cold or cough is getting worse rather than better no matter what you do, you should see your doctor to make sure you’re overall health is still OK. While they can’t do much for a virus, if you have Bronchitis, Pneumonia, or a gastrointestinal bug that is making your cough and cold worse, your doctor can prescribe things for you, such as antibiotics, inhalers, sleep aides, and stronger cough medicines to help you get over your illness.