Nothing is more annoying than realizing that you’re coming down with a cold. But fortunately, that throat tickle or the little nose sniffle that hasn’t gone away by itself is usually remedied by a few doses of cold medicine. However, what most of us don’t think about is how some of the ingredients in those “harmless” cough syrups can unknowingly affect us if we have underlying or pre-existing health issues.
Since most cold medicines contain ingredients that induce sleepiness to allow the body to rest and heal, it can be harmful if the person has heart issues. Here are some of the best medicines that will not only cure your cold but are gentle on the heart.
According to the American Heart Association, the safest cough and cold medicines for you are:
- chlorpheniramine (Chlortrimeton® or AllerChlor®)
- guaifenesin with dextromethorphan (Robitussin DM®)
- loratadine (Claritin®)
Cough and cold medicines you should not take:
- pseudoephedrine (Sudafed®, Actifed®, Contrex®, and Nyquil®)
- phenylephrine (Neo-Synephrine®)
- ephedrine (also known as “ma huang”) or any kind of appetite suppressant (such as Metabolife®)
One of the biggest dangers to those with heart problems is sodium which causes your body to retain extra fluid. This hikes blood pressure levels and overworks your heart.
The following medicines are high in sodium: