My experience with Zicam

A pernicious cold has been making its way though my family. First, my 11 yo son developed a cold and cough about 4 weeks ago. Then about 2 weeks ago my wife developed a severe cold with sinus infection and a hacking cough. So when I woke up last Thursday with that feeling in my throat, I knew what was about to happen.

I’ve never been able to catch a cold in the earliest stages before because I always just think it’s temporary stuffiness, but I knew I was about to be slammed with a nasty virus. I went to the corner drug store and picked up a bottle of Zicam RapidMelt tablets. My father once reported a good experience with a Zicam product a few years ago, so I thought I’d give it a try.

After taking the first tablet and waiting the required 30 minutes before eating or drinking, I immediately noticed a change in my sense of taste. Virtually all of my sense of taste was gone. I had a cup of coffee, and it tasted nothing like coffee. I googled Zicam and loss of taste and found some horror stories of people who had permanently lost their senses of taste or smell after using the nasal swab versions of Zicam (which have since been taken off shelves), so that made me feel a little better that I might not have permanently neutered my tongue.

The writing on the package claims Zicam “reduces the duration of cold symptoms when taken at the first sign of a cold”. This is what I was hoping for, and I can happily report that it is what I experienced. My first symptoms appeared on Thursday, Friday the virus ramped up pretty well but subsided on Saturday, and I took my last RapidMelt on Monday. Some extremely minor symptoms linger, but nothing I can complain about. I’m also extremely happy that my full sense of taste returned within 36 hours of taking my last tablet!

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