Advantages Work slightly
Disadvantages Taste vile
|Value for Money|
During the winter my family seem to suffer a few coughs and colds. Working in a healthcare environment seems to have given me brilliant immunity to most of the common bugs so it is rare that I get anything more than a bit of a cough or a slightly scratchy throat.I tend to keep a few things in the cupboard for these irritating winter bugs but my family merrily help themselves and never bother tell me when anything needs replacing. So it was that one day I woke up with a rather sore throat, unusually for me I felt quite rough with it so I decided to go and find one of the nice Strawberry Strepsils that I keep in the cupboard. I was not impressed to pick up the box to find it was totally empty and the only Strepsils left were the Sore Throat and Blocked Nose variety. I thought that they would be better than nothing so I got the pack out of the cupboard.
The large cardboard box of 36 lozenges has a blue and green design across the front. I think a lot of people associate menthol with green so I can understand the colouring. They claim to offer effective dual action relief with Menthol to unblock your nose.The Strepsil itself was presented in a clear blister on a foil strip and was blue in colour. I don’t know if it is just me but I certainly don’t associate a blue colouring with anything nice (except blue Smarties) so I was a little bit reticent to try one.
I popped one easily out of the foil. The lozenge was just under 2cm in diameter and had no noticeable aroma which surprised me as I expected it to have a menthol smell. These are hard lozenges rather than soft pastilles so are esaier to suck without the desire to start chewing.The directions advise dissolving one lozenge slowly in the mouth every 2 to 3 hours. I duly popped it in my mouth. The taste was absolutely horrific. It felt as if the lozenge was almost burning my tongue and I immediately had to push it into my cheek to get rid of that horrible sensation. I then tried sucking it again once I had prepared myself for the shock. The lozenges contain both Levomenthol and Eucalyptus Oil which must account for the vile taste when first sucking them. They also contain glucose but there was certainly no sweetness at first.
I must admit that after about a minute I did start to get used to the taste and it started to taste a bit more like I would expect of a Strepsil. It also seemed to get a bit sweeter the longer it was in my mouth and it became more tolerable.I did notice that my throat felt a tiny bit better whilst sucking these lozenges and my chest also felt extremely clear. They do state that they would help a blocked nose and since I didn’t have one of these I can’t really comment although it didn’t feel like any vapours were hitting my nose although I could definitely feel them on my chest.
My throat did feel a bit less gritty after finishing the lozenge but the feeling really didn’t last more than about 20 minutes at the most. Strepsils do contain two different antiseptics (Dichlorobenzyl alcohol and Amylmetacresol) which can help a sore throat if taken regularly for a couple of days but there is no way I was going to be taking any more of this type.I now know why there is an almost full packet of these in my medicine cupboard. It seems that everyone in the family has tried them and they all think they are horrible and have since just put up with having a sore throat rather than endure sucking another one.
I remember the old adage that a medicine could only do you good if it tasted awful so I imagine there are some people who will like these. These will be the same people who enjoy Fisherman’s Friends or the old Victory Vs. Personally if I am feeling poorly I want to feel cosy and looked after and these didn’t fit the bill for me at all.I am not sure how much these cost as they no longer sell them in my local Boots but I imagine they were probably about £4. The pack does state that they are suitable for adults and children and it doesn’t give any age indication for children but I think it would take a pretty brave young child to want to take more than one of these. Also these are hard lozenges so can present a choking hazard to younger children.
I imagine these will sit in my cupboard until they go past their expiry date. I think they would be better for a sore throat associated with a tight chest as there is a definite warming feeing when taking them but for a plain sore throat there are much nicer and more effective things on the market so I will give these a miss.
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