Vicks VapoRub provides relief from cough due to minor bronchial and throat irritation that can accompany the common cold, according to the manufacturer. The ointment may also temporarily relieve minor aches and pains of joints and muscles.
The active ingredients in Vicks include camphor, eucalyptus oil and menthol. For adults and children age 2 and older, the manufacturer recommends applying the ointment as a thick layer on the chest and throat and covering it with a warm, dry cloth. Users may apply it up to three times daily to suppress cough, according to Vicks. For the treatment of minor muscle and joint pain, the user applies the ointment to the affected area up to four times daily.