4 reasons to use virtual care this winter

The snowy (or rainy) season has arrived, and with it comes more than cozy weather and pumpkin spice lattés. It is a peak season for many viral illnesses because the cold weather can suppress your immune system and increase your susceptibility to infections.

When you inevitably get hit with a bad cold or other illness this season, and you feel tired, congested, sore, or nauseated, the last thing you want to do leave your house (or better yet, your bed). Fortunately, virtual healthcare services like Medisys On-Demand let you consult with a healthcare professional from the comfort of your home.

Here are 4 common health concerns treated through virtual care:

1. Colds, flu and respiratory illness

Colder weather compromising your immune system is just one of the reasons why this is a peak season for catching a cold. The colder weather also keeps us indoors, in closer quarters with each other for longer periods of time, making us more susceptible to catching or passing on an airborne illness. The decrease in humidity is also a contributing factor; studies show that dry air makes it easier for the flu virus to circulate, and it also dries up some of the protective mucus in your lungs, creating the ideal conditions to catch a respiratory illness.

When it comes to respiratory illness – early detection is critical. Some viruses and bacterial infections mimic a common cold, but are actually much more dangerous and require treatment. The earlier you can identify and treat the illness, the shorter its duration in your body. With Medisys On-Demand, at the very first sign of an illness you can connect instantly through your smartphone with a healthcare professional who will help you determine the best, most effective treatment.

2. Allergies & asthma

If you suffer from a ragweed allergy, you may be suffering from sneezing, congestion, puffy eyes and other unpleasant symptoms. Fall and even winter is often an unpleasant time of year for asthma sufferers as well. The risk of an asthma attack increases during the colder season because of a number of factors including the onset of cooler air, allergies, leaves, and campfires. As in the case with respiratory infections, there are viruses that mimic symptoms of allergies, which are actually more dangerous. With Medisys On-Demand it’s easy to consult with a healthcare professional about your symptoms to determine the cause and recommended course of action.

3. Sore throat

A sore, itchy throat is most commonly caused by a viral infection such as a cold or flu, and thus is one of the more common signs that illness is on the horizon. Often a sore throat will resolve itself on its own, but in other cases treatment is required – a quick consult with our virtual care team will help you determine the best course of action. It’s important to speak with a healthcare professional if your sore throat lasts longer than a week or is frequently recurring; if you have difficulty swallowing, breathing or opening your mouth; if you’re feeling joint pain or an earache; develop a rash or fever higher than 101˚F; discover blood in your saliva or phlegm; or develop a lump of any size around your neck or swelling in your face.

4. Sinusitis

Sinus pain is a symptom of a common cold, which usually goes away by itself within about a week. But when sinus congestion lingers or worsens over time, it may be indicative of a bacterial infection, and in some cases, may require antibiotics. Sinusitis (also known as a sinus infection) refers to inflammation of the mucous membrane that lines the sinuses, which causes symptoms such as thick nasal mucus, a plugged nose, and facial pain. Sinusitis becomes more common as the cold weather arrives, and the pain associated with sinus headaches worsens in the cold and damp weather. If you are experiencing sinus pain, consult our virtual healthcare team to help determine the best course of action.

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