What are the treatment options for viral infections?

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The most common treatment option for viral infections that are fairly common is to let them run their course. Your own body will actually build up immunity to the virus so that you can fight it before it makes you ill the next time it enters your body. You can treat the symptoms, however, with over the counter medications such as cold medicine, ibuprofen, acetaminophen, and nasal sprays containing decongestants. Antibiotics are ineffective against viruses. Prescription antiviral medication is available to treat more serious viral infections when necessary. Antivirals are difficult to develop because viruses reproduce inside human cells, which is why antiviral medications can be toxic to human cells.

Continue Learning about Viral Infections

Viral Infections

Viral Infections

Viral infections like herpes simplex, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), chicken pox and rotavirus are infections caused by a virus instead of a bacterium. Viral infections do not respond to antibiotics, but some specific viruses ...

like influenza A and B can be treated with certain antiviral medications. Most commonly, treatment for viral infections includes drinking lots of fluids, getting rest, eating well and letting the illness run its course.
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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.