Home » Your Health » 9 Foolish Actions Committed by Sick People

9 Foolish Actions Committed by Sick People


You’re coughing, sneezing, and sniffling, but you have stuff to get done. Now, while going into the office or powering up with caffeine to get you through the day might seem foolish, you’re actually prolonging that miserable cold and risking the health of your healthy coworkers.

Here are the nine most foolish actions committed by sick people…

1. You’re Convinced You Know Best

Despite the recommendations of professional doctors, many of us (I’m not pointing fingers) believe we know best despite the lack of a medical degree. For instance, you may think you have a secret remedy to blast the cold virus faster. However, according to the experts at Medical News Today, most self-prescribed remedies won’t cure a cold faster and they may actually cause a cold infection to linger a few days longer than usual.

2. You Demand Antibiotics

Research published in the British Medical Journal warns that’s there ain’t no cure for the common cold. For this reason, rushing to your doctor demanding a prescription for antibiotics won’t do you any good. Sure, you might lesson the symptoms, but the common cold is viral (unlike a bacterial infection), meaning it can’t be cured with antibiotics, stop you from being contagious, or help you feel better any faster.

3. You Recycle Old Antibiotics

Put down those 6-month old drugs! Just because you have leftover antibiotics from a previous illness doesn’t mean the same drugs will cure your cold or flu. Not only is self-medicating dangerous—if you’re taking existing drugs for a sinus infection, taking more may cause adverse effects. Plus, overdoing medications can suppress an infection and confuse the test results of bacterial cultures to come back negative when you are, in fact, sick.

4. You Go to Work Sick

I don’t have to tell you that your workplace is a Petri dish of germs come cold and flu season. It’s no surprise that microbiology experts at the University of Arizona found that contagions can spread rampantly to over 60-percent of a building’s inhabitants within a period of 4-hours! Scientists tracked the spread of a type of Norovirus organism, which tested positive on desk tops, computers, keyboards, phones, doorknobs, kitchen surfaces, and tabletops throughout an office building within 8-hours.

5. You Power Up with Caffeine

Sure, a mug of coffee or 2 can help you get through a busy morning, but if you’re sick and use caffeinated beverages to power through your day (i.e., caffeinated teas, energy drinks, and coffee) you’re only prolonging your illness. The common cold and flu needs 2 things to recover—rest and fluids (preferably the un-caffeinated kind). Too much caffeine will zap hydration stores, which you need to push the illness out of your body.

6. You Misuse Cold & Flu Remedies

No matter if you’re prescribed an antibiotic for a sinus infection or using an over-the-counter decongestant and pain reliever for the flu—you can only use so much and for so long without causing “rebound illness,” which causes the return of more severe symptoms (i.e., congestion and inflammation). This is why it’s vital to listen and follow the directions of your doctor and the pharmacist.

7. There She Blows!

When you’re congested with a cold, you might blow and blow with no relief in sight. If you’re nasal passages are running a never-ending flood of mucous, giving your nose a good blow might temporarily drain your schnozzle. However, blowing too often and too hard may drive nasal fluid (along with viruses and bacteria) back up into your sinus cavities, prolonging your illness.

8. You Overdo the Cold Remedies

Antihistamines, pain relievers, cough syrup, and decongestant sprays are readily available over the counter, but the National Institutes of Health caution that you can overdo cold treatments and actually make your symptoms worse. Keep in mind that many cold and flu remedies take 30-minutes to an hour to start working. So resist the urge to overload your body with cold meds, causing rashes, liver damage, and lessening your body’s natural flu-fighting abilities.

9. You Smoke While Sick

What are you thinking lighting up while coughing, wheezing, and suffering with a cold or flu? Infectious disease specialists agree that smoking exacerbates the symptoms of a cold, drying out and irritating your sinus cavities and throat, and damaging your lungs. Even secondhand smoke will prolong your illness.

ADVERTISEMENT

We Recommend

More on ActiveBeat
  • 10 Treatments for a Sore Throat
    There are few things more irritating, and more likely to disrupt a busy work schedule, than a painful sore throat.
    Your Health
  • Is It Okay to Work Out While You're Sick?
    New research shows that it's okay to work out while suffering from an illness -- so long as it's a mild condition.
    Your Health
  • Cold Temperatures Can Increase Chances of Getting a Cold, Study Shows
    A new study suggests that being exposed to cold weather can actually increase the chances of getting a nasty cold.
    Your Health
  • Adults Over 30 Likely to Get Flu Twice Every Decade, Study Says
    Every winter we're told it's a good idea to get the flu shot. But exactly how many times are we going to get the flu?
    Your Health
  • 5 Quick Ways to Keep Germs from Spreading in Your Home
    Keeping your house germ-free isn’t just a battle to be fought during cold and flu season. It’s a year-long endeavor—especially if you have school-aged children at home.
    Your Health
  • What Your Snot Says About Your Health
    Admit it; when you blow your nose you take a little peek, don't you? According to the XX, it's healthy to examine what's left behind in your tissue because it can be a good...
    Your Health
  • 12 Health Facts About Respiratory Syncytial Virus
    There are a lot of viruses out there, including many you probably have never heard of. One of those might be Respiratory Syncytial Virus or RSV, which is actually the most common...
    Your Health
  • 12 Early Signs of the Flu
    Flu season is most prevalent during the cold months of winter, though no one is guaranteed to avoid an influenza infection when the weather starts to warm up.
    Your Health
  • Most Coughs Take 3 Weeks to Clear Up
    When stricken with cough and cold, most of us assume to be back to our bright eye, bushy-tailed selves within about a week’s time.
    Your Health
  • Five More Die From Flu in San Diego County
    Five additional people have died from flu-related causes in San Diego County. This brings the influenza-related death tally from 14 up to 19—marking this season as the fourth...
    Your Health
  • 7 Notoriously Nasty Flu Types Circulating this Season
    Winter—along with the treacherous road conditions, icy sidewalks, and killer icicles from above, there are some seriously nasty and notorious flu strains running...
    Your Health
  • The Importance of the Flu Vaccine
    Yet another flu season is upon us. With an estimated average of 200,000 U.S. hospitalizations due to seasonal flu complications each year, influenza is considered by health...
    Your Health
  • The Research on the Flu Vaccine
    Every fall, advertisements appear reminding you to get your yearly flu shot. The Centre for Chronic Disease (CDC) recommends that everyone above the age of 6-months should get...
    Your Health
  • Flu Season Starts Off With A Kick
    The flu season is hitting hard and fast this year in the United States. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention is saying that it could be the start of the worst flu season...
    Your Health
  • 6 Simple Tricks to Beat That Winter Cold
    You know when it’s coming—that congestion, scratchy throat, build-up and then “achoo”, the sneeze…you have a winter cold! And you’re not alone. On average U.S.
    Your Health