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Minor Illnesses

Colds

Home treatment:

  • Increase fluid intake and rest.
  • If you have a sore throat, use numbing spray (Chloraseptic®) or a lozenge. You can also gargle with warm salt water.
  • For a fever, acetaminophen can be taken as needed. Follow the dosing guide on the label.
  • For a cough, use Robitussin or Robitussin DM.
  • For congestion and other cold symptoms, use a room vaporizer. You may use sodium chloride nasal spray or Zyrtec® if an over-the-counter medication is desired.

Call for an appointment within 24 hours if you have any of these symptoms:

  • Ear pain with a fever
  • Sore throat that lasts longer than 48 hours
  • Coughing with shortness of breath, chest pain or coughing up blood
  • Fever of 101˚ F or higher
  • A cough with greenish-yellow phlegm

Diarrhea and/or flu

Home treatment:

  • Drink clear liquids for 24-48 hours (ice chips, soft drinks, sports drinks, tea, soup or broth).
  • Do not drink milk or eat solid food.
  • After 24-48 hours, start to eat toast, crackers, baked potatoes, boiled eggs, rice and cooked cereal.
  • After diarrhea stops, add milk and meats last.

Call for an appointment within 24 hours if you have any of these symptoms:

  • Cannot empty your bladder or keep fluids down
  • Feel faint or dizzy
  • Fever of 101˚ F or higher
  • Bloody stools
  • More than10 stools in one day
  • Severe abdominal pain
  • Vomiting
  • You do not start to get better after 24 hours

Rash with itching

Home treatment:

  • Soothe skin with calamine lotion or cool, damp cloths.
  • Think about whether you changed bath, laundry or dish soap in recent days.

Call for an appointment within 24 hours if you have any of these symptoms:

  • Rash is all over your body or on your face.
  • Itching is moderate to severe
  • You do not know what caused the rash.
  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Rash bumps seep fluid
  • Fever of 101°F or higher
Love + Medicine

Every day, Gundersen Health System delivers great medicine plus a little something extra—we call it Love + Medicine.

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