I’m starting to get lots of calls from patients with complaints of runny nose and nasal congestion. Antibiotics are not my first choice without seeing patients. There are a lot of viruses in the community as well as allergies that many people get with the change of season.
Start by doing a nasal rinse with salt water. Purchase a Nettie Pot if you can. They are sold now in most pharmacies. Vitamin C and antioxidants help along with plenty of sleep and clear fluids. Avoid caffeine and alcohol, and see your practitioner if your symptoms worsen after a few days (especially if you are not sleeping).
Antibiotics may be necessary if you develop a bacterial sinus infection; when symptoms persist for >10 days. There are many causes of a runny nose. Not all of them are treated with medication.
Are antibiotics effective for acute purulent rhinitis? Systematic review and meta-analysis of placebo controlled randomised trials BMJ Online First
Newswise – Antibiotics should not be given to patients with acute purulent rhinitis (a runny nose with coloured discharge), a familiar feature of the……