Do you feel just bad and have a sore throat? You’ve probably got a cold. Symptoms caused by the common cold often resemble flu symptoms, however, these are two different conditions, although both caused by viruses. The common cold is associated with much milder symptoms. Do you suspect you have a cold? Check how to deal with it most effectively.
What is a cold? How long does it last?
This is a classic seasonal disease, attacking with the onset of the first chill. Sometimes it comes with the flow of air, with rain or is caused by sudden climate changes. Why do we get sick more often in winter? There are two main reasons: cold slows down the flow of mucus, which is responsible for creating a barrier against viruses, and in addition, we spend more time in closed and crowded rooms where viruses can circulate and thus become easier to infect. In fact, the common cold is an acute infection of viral origin, which mainly affects the upper respiratory tract: nose and throat. It can take several days or even weeks.
The first symptoms of a cold appear one or two days after infection. Patients often feel scratching, burning and dry nose during this period. This may indicate that it was our nasal epithelium that was attacked by viruses. Gradually, patients begin to feel unpleasant sore throat, which is often accompanied by hoarseness. A runny nose begins to develop, and sneezing normally. When it comes to a sore throat, it usually goes away after about two days. On the other hand, nasal discharge, which is watery at the beginning, begins to be denser and has yellow or green colors (this indicates the purulent nature of runny nose). Some patients may also have a cough and a high fever (especially in the first days of colds), which fluctuates around 37–38 ° C. It is worth noting that high body temperature occurs more often in children.
How to prevent a cold?
There is no reliable evidence that freezing or prolonged cold exposure increases the risk of colds. However, some studies show that, for example, increased cooling of the legs increases the risk of getting a cold. However, it is difficult to judge from the available information whether this actually increases the chances of getting a cold. Certainly, apart from freezing, an infection is necessary for the common cold.
A large number of medicines, which is designed to strengthen immunity, does not affect the risk of colds. There is also a lot of talk about the beneficial effects of garlic, for sure your mothers have given you milk with garlic and honey many times. Popular vitamin C reduces the risk of catching cold only in people who exercise intensively (e.g. footballers, marathon runners).
In the period of increased risk of developing a cold, try to avoid crowded places where it is easier to get a battery or virus infection. At school, at work, in the library or on the tram, try not to touch your nose or eyes with your hands.