Common Cold

Common Cold

Common Cold

Although Spain enjoys a lot more sunshine than most Northern European Countries, it doesn’t mean that we are free from catching colds or the flu.

Both are respiratory illnesses with the common cold, otherwise known as Upper Respiratory Illness (URI), being the main reason why people will visit the doctor, A cold is a virus and there are over 200 cold viruses, the most common one being the rhinovirus.

The reason why people are more vulnerable to a virus in the winter rather than the summer is the fact that windows are closed more during the winter months. People will tend to go outdoors less in the cold and a virus loves close proximity where the humidity is a perfect environment for it to spread.

Symptoms

After the virus enters your or your child’s body, it causes a reaction–the body’s immune system begins to react to the invading virus. Producing the following symptoms:

  • An increase in mucus production (a runny nose).
  • Swelling of the lining of the nose (making it hard to breathe and congestion).
  • Sneezing (from the irritation in the nose).
  • A cough (from the increased mucus dripping down the throat).

Who is most vulnerable to colds?

Children are generally more vulnerable than adults, an adult will catch an average of 3- 4 colds a year, whereas a child could catch as much as up to 8 colds a year.

How are they diagnosed?

Normally a cold is diagnosed by the Doctor from a self-report description of the symptoms

Treatment

Treatment for the common cold is fairly simple but may vary depending on factors such as

  • Age of the person affected
  • Medical history
  • Family vulnerability to respiratory infections
  • Allergies and tolerance to medication

It is generally accepted that fluid intake needs to be increased, preventing dehydration and maintaining mucus tissue such as the interior of the nose moist. Also staying away from passive smoke and smoky environments as these will irritate the respiratory system even further.

If you believe that either you or your child may have a common cold, then do not hesitate to contact a doctor in your area. See here for all ESHA approved Doctors.

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