Dr. Dennis Perry at Meridian Primary Care in Okemos is treating upper respiratory infections with cold-like symptoms that last for a week or so.
It starts with sore throat and fever for three or four days, then a cough starts on day two or three and lasts another week.
To treat it, rest. Take Tylenol or Ibuprofen for aches and fever, and drink lots of fluids to prevent dehydration. Breathing in steam can loosen congestion, and over-the-counter cold medications can help too.
If symptoms haven't improved after 10 days, or you have a high fever, see a doctor.
Dr. Perry has also been seeing cases of shingles.
Shingles isn't communicable in the sense of "catching" it from someone. It is caused by the same virus that causes chicken pox.
Shingles starts with tingling, itching or pain in a certain area, which then turns into a rash or blisters.
You will need to see a doctor for antivirals.
If you are exposed to someone with shingles during the first few days of the breakout, you can catch chicken pox.
People who have had chicken pox all have the virus lying dormant in their spinal cords. Once something activates it, it travels down a nerve to that area of skin.