Dr. Virginia Feldman of Hudson Valley Ear Nose & Throat Provides Tips for Preventing a Cold from Spoiling February Break

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A combination of OTC remedies can bring comfort in the air.

The air tickets were booked months when the thought of escaping the winter snow was most appealing. Then with just days to go until take-off, a nasty winter cold has taken hold. While cancelling the trip is not an option – the plane tickets and hotel package are non-refundable – there are simple steps to take to make flying as comfortable as possible, says Virginia Feldman, MD, of Hudson Valley Ear, Nose & Throat (ENT).

“We have two important objectives for patients who fly with a cold, making them comfortable and protecting their ears and sinuses from damage during pressure changes inside the plane,” explains Dr. Feldman. “The good news is that effective remedies are readily available over-the-counter at a drugstore or pharmacy.”

One of the most important medications to consider is a decongestant. Oral and nasal decongestants help open up the sinuses and ears so that they are less susceptible to pain and pressure build-up during take-off and landing. Take a dose 30 to 60 minutes before the plane departs. Some people also get relief from an antihistamine to help dry up a runny nose. As with all medications, those with pre-existing conditions such as hypertension should consult with a physician before taking a decongestant.

Many cold sufferers can also get relief from earplugs that are specially designed to prevent pressure from building up in the ears.

Dr. Feldman recommends putting together a simple travel kit to improve comfort in flight:

  • A small bottle of saline spray for moistening nasal passages
  • Gum to chew during take-off and landing
  • Cold or cough lozenges to soothe a dry throat or cough
  • A collapsible water bottle to fill at a drinking fountain in the gate area
  • Lip balm to prevent lips from drying out and cracking
  • A few favorite tea bags for adding to hot water in-flight
  • Travel packs of tissues and a sealable plastic bag for used tissues

“While it’s nearly impossible to speed up a cold, home remedies such as orange juice, vitamin C tablets, zinc lozenges, tea, and good old-fashioned chicken soup in the days before a trip may help people feel better faster.” Dr. Feldman also stresses the importance of seeing a doctor if illness seems more serious than a common cold.

Hudson Valley Ear, Nose & Throat, P.C. is located at 75 Crystal Run Road, Building B, Suite 220, Middletown, NY. For more information, please call 888.350.1368 or visit http://www.hudsonvalleyent.com.

About Hudson Valley Ear, Nose & Throat
Hudson Valley Ear, Nose & Throat, P.C., has been redefining the healthcare experience in the Hudson Valley for more than ten years. Its board-certified physicians, supported by licensed audiologists and dedicated staff, have established a reputation for superior care in treating patients with allergies, gastroesophageal reflux, thyroid and parathyroid disorders, hearing and balance disorders, nasal and sinus disease, head and neck cancer, sleep apnea, snoring, and pediatric ear and throat disorders.

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Kimberly Sawicki
Co-Communications, Inc.
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