Are These Cold Symptoms?
Chances are, you’ve had quite a few colds in your life. You might have very similar symptoms each time with each cold following the same pattern, or you might experience each cold a little differently. Colds have a standard set of symptoms, but they are a little different for each person who gets sick. Colds are unpleasant, though they only last about a week. If your cold lasts more than ten days, it might be time to talk to your doctor.
Cold symptoms are generally not severe enough to need medical treatment if you’re otherwise healthy, but some people who have pre-existing health conditions may need more professional care. Knowing what symptoms to expect can help you to choose over the counter and home remedies that will help you feel better faster. It’s also a good idea to stay home and rest while you have a cold, so you don’t get other people sick.
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Coughing is another very common symptom of a cold. This may also be a symptom that hangs on the longest since it takes time for the tissues in the throat to heal. Coughing is often caused by sinus drainage, or irritation and swelling of the lymph nodes in the throat, which play a role in how the immune system fights illnesses. Phlegm can also cause coughing in the throat or congestion in the lungs, neither of which are enjoyable. As your body fights your cold, all of these symptoms will pass, and you'll find that your cough slowly subsides over the coming days.
One of the hallmarks of the flu is that there is usually a fever, so many times if there is a fever a person will think that they have the flu. It is possible to have a fever with a cold since the fever is an indication that your body is fighting an infection. A fever with a cold will be lower, less than 102 F in adults and 100 F in children. If your temperature is above this, it may be time to make an appointment with your doctor to seek more effective care and to ensure that no other issues are going on.
It's very common to have a headache with a cold, and this can be caused by coughing, sneezing, nose blowing, or mild dehydration. It's important to drink plenty of liquids while fighting off a cold not only so you can recover faster but so there is less discomfort as you are healing. It is also possible to have some mild body aches while fighting a cold. Since the immune system is on high alert, this means there can be more inflammation in the body, which can cause pain in muscles and joints. You can use over the counter pain relievers for the headaches and body aches that you may experience with your cold.
Some people experience a worsening of their cold over more than a week, and this can indicate a need for medical attention. In those who are prone to more severe illnesses, a cold can develop into sinus infections, ear infections, pneumonia, and other conditions that require a doctor's care. While most people recover from a cold in less than a week, don't hesitate to make a trip to the clinic if you aren't getting better, or are feeling worse.
Colds are common illnesses that can happen to anyone, and most people catch a cold several times a year. There are common symptoms that can tell you if you've caught a cold, and these symptoms usually last only a short time and are not severe, though they may be enough to interrupt your normal daily activities. If your symptoms become severe or it takes longer than a week to recover from a cold, you may need to see a doctor.
Most people who catch a cold talk primarily about their sinus symptoms, as this is one of the most common things that happens with a cold. You could have both sides of your sinuses stuffed up or just one at a time. Your nose could be runny, or just painful. If you have a lot of sinus congestion, it could drain down the back of your throat, causing more symptoms. Congestion and sneezing are common with a cold, and sinus discharge can range from clear, to milky, to even yellowish or greenish, which are all normal for a cold.