When you are suffering from a cold and a sore throat and you head to the medicine cabinet for an over-the-counter pain reliever, do you know which one is more effective? According to recent research, cold sufferers are better off reaching for acetaminophen (Tylenol) than ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil) for relief of a stuffed or runny nose, fever and cough. Moreover, cold sufferers should resist the urge to use both drugs simultaneously since ibuprofen’s anti-inflammatory properties may stifle the immune response, leading to prolonged symptoms.  According to researchers who studied people with upper-respiratory infections, those who took acetaminophen in combination with ibuprofen were 50%-70% more likely to experience new or worse symptoms than those who only took acetaminophen.

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HINT: While it may help cold sufferers to have a vaporizer in their bedrooms, they should avoid directly inhaling steam, which has the potential to scald delicate nasal and throat tissues.