Common Cold, a viral infection affects most people especially in winter season. Learn about the common cold symptoms and common cold treatment here.
Common Cold is a viral infectious disease of the upper respiratory tract but it mainly affects the nose with symptoms like sneezing and running nose. Whether drastic change in weather, heavy and sudden intake of frozen and chilled food and of course infections are the major causes of common cold which is also known as nasopharyngitis, rhinopharyngitis and acute coryza by the medical community. Let us find out the causes of this viral infection, what are the common cold symptoms and how common cold treatment is usually done in this article.
How Does the Common Cold Spread?
There are more than 20 different viruses that cause common cold and the symptoms vary depending upon the type of virus, person’s age, gender and other health complications, if any. Cold is contagious and its viruses are air borne which spread very fast from person to person. It spreads even faster among children as their resistance level is low. Though adults have a higher level of resistance, other factors such as anxiety, depression and exposure to air pollution work as catalyst to spread the viral infection which is popularly called as common cold.
Common Cold Symptoms
Common cold symptoms depend upon person to person. This means that the symptoms of common cold can vary from each individual . It also depends upon the type of cold.
Starting with running nose, sneezing and watery eyes, it also causes stuffed head and breathing problems. Situation aggravates if the person already has respiratory diseases such as asthma. In such situations, nasal membranes swell and breathing with nose becomes difficult.
Sense of taste and smell disappear temporarily. Sore throat and repetitive cough, especially while lying down are also a symptom of cold cough heading towards more serious issue. If the patient starts developing fever and joint pains after a few days , then the next stage of cough could be Influenza or Flu. There are various types of flu such as Asian Flu, Bird Flu, Swine Flu, therefore immediate medical attention should be given to the patient if the persistent cough is followed by high fever.
Though there is no medicine for common cold treatment, physicians prescribe anti-antibiotics that prevent bacterial growth and possible worsening of the situation in the form of Pneumonia.
Common Cold Treatment
Usually common cold and cough gets cured naturally in a week or so. However, extra rest and sleep with increased intake of liquids may provide relief from discomfort. Aspirin also works well for many people in effective common cold treatment. Self medication with advanced medicines like anti-histamines and nose drops must be avoided. If the situation is really worsening with earaches, dry cough or chest pain, then these things must be brought to the notice of the physician.
How to Prevent Common Cold
Regular intake of Vitamin C strengthens immune systems and helps in preventing viral infections such as common cold. Avoid eating chilled food and beverages and keep stress level under control. Pregnant women and elderly people with heart ailments and lung problems may go for inoculation to prevent cold. However, in that case, expert medical advice must be taken as self medication may worsen the situation to severe levels.