Peoples Digest Online – Quick-fix medicines like Lemsip and Sudofed do not help with a head cold, the latest guidance from the NHS tells People. New advice from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence says the best bet for patients with sinus infections is to stick with paracetamol as there is little to no evidence that oral decongestants help relieve symptoms.
The body of experts also added there is no consistent evidence that inhaling steam helps symptoms either, the Telegraph reported. It comes as NICE released new guidance on treating sinusitis and told GPs not to prescribe antibiotics to help cure the condition.
Figures have shown antibiotics are given to 91 per cent of people who visit their GP with symptoms of sinusitis and NICE said the inappropriate use of the drugs fuel resistance.
Dr Tessa Lewis, GP and chair of the managing common infections guidance committee, said: “Health professionals can help their patients cope with this infection and the sometimes unpleasant symptoms it can cause.
“They should tell them that they’ll probably be feeling this way for a while, and that unless they are very unwell, the best thing to do is to take paracetamol and ‘take it easy’.”
Professor Gillian Leng, deputy chief executive at NICE, said: “Antibiotic resistance is one of the greatest dangers to our health, which is why we must all work together to fight it.
“Our new guidance will help healthcare professionals to use antibiotics efficiently and only when they are really needed. This will help to protect these vital medicines and ensure that no one experiences side-effects from a treatment they do not need.”
Most cases of sinus infections clear up within two or three weeks without any treatment.