Annals of Phlegm

I am entering week two of the Mother Of All Chest Colds.

Things started off slowly, a week ago Wednesday, with a fever of 38.6ºC for about 12 hours; the fever broke, all was well. I made English muffins. I cleaned up the back yard.

Friday was fine. Bullet dodged!

On Saturday, though,I developed a sore throat, a cough, and ever-worsening congestion; my time since then has focused primarily on phlegm management. Bonus symptoms: headache, fatigue, lethargy. The congestion’s risen up into my sinuses a few times, then settled back into my chest.

A trip to the nurse practitioner on Thursday showed my vitals are good, I’ve not got pneumonia, and, as it’s likely a virus at play, I’ve no choice but to wait it out. She reported that she’s seeing cases last as long as three weeks. Ugg.

For those of you similarly stricken, some tips from the field:

  • Cepacol lozenges are the best I’ve found. They’re also less popular, so more likely to be in stock when brands like Halls are missing from store shelves.
  • Mucinex was a help when I needed to loosen things up, and clear my most-congested chest. The only downside was that my nose ran for hours and hours.
  • I’ve never been a taker of pain-relievers, but Advil has been my friend this week; I wouldn’t have been able to sleep without it.
  • Secaris is a nasal lubricant I picked up on the recommendation of a clerk at Murphy’s Parkdale Pharmacy (it’s on the back wall near the cough drops); it really help when long nights of nose-blowing resulted in a raw nose.
  • Head-over-boiling-water-in-a-bowl has really helped, a couple of times a day.

Every time I think I’m clear of this beast, it rears its head again; fortunately for the past three nights I’ve been able to sleep clear-through, which has been a big help (before then I was spending long stretches of the night on the couch, coughing).

This is the longest I’ve been sick in years, and compared to COVID, which, for me, was a walk in the park, this virus packs a wallop.

Wish me luck.


Bruce's picture
Bruce on January 29, 2023 - 06:31 Permalink

Hope you feel better soon. Take care, Bruce

vbj's picture
vbj on January 29, 2023 - 09:37 Permalink

Sounds like you've got all of the tools to feel better until it's gone. Very similar to what we're seeing in VT (although here it seems like every other person has COVID. Masks have reappeared).

Judith's picture
Judith on January 29, 2023 - 10:16 Permalink

Oh Peter, what a drag! I’m sorry you’re going through this and hope you feel much better soon!

Kelly Lantz's picture
Kelly Lantz on January 29, 2023 - 12:07 Permalink

I'm on day 13 of the exact same bug. What a doozy, I can't remember ever being sick like this. Finally on the mend tho. Hope you're on the mend as well!

Oliver's picture
Oliver on January 30, 2023 - 02:42 Permalink

Definitely wishing! Meanwhile, do stay in touch with your docs! My understanding is that viral not infrequently becomes supplemented and supplanted by opportunistic things that you can treat. In the US I think this is the sort of scenario in which they prescribe antibiotics prophylactically—not to say that’d be ideal public policy