Symptoms Of Colds
Veterinarian Reviewed on January 9, 2012 by Paulina Nelega, RH
Posted in Uncategorized
Symptoms of Colds
The common cold is typically caused by a group of viruses called the rhino virus and this illness can be self limiting, meaning it can go away on its own. The cold may recur on the other hand and since there is no real cure for the common cold yet, billions of people all around the world develop this illness every day. The common cold may be caused by not just the rhino virus; there are 200 more viruses that can cause the cold in humans.
Causes of Colds
As mentioned, the rhinovirus is just one of the groups of viruses that cause the common cold. About 200 more virus species are responsible for colds in humans. Even animals such as dogs, cats and birds get the colds, and this virus is very different from the influenza virus that can cause serious symptoms and even causing worldwide deaths.
The common cold is spread through the following ways:
1. It is spread through close personal contact, through borrowing personal items such as handkerchiefs, eating utensils, mobile phones and even personal grooming items.
2. As a person with a cold sneezes or coughs, particles may fall into objects or foods contaminating them with the cold virus.
3. As a person with colds wipes his nose or mouth with his hands, he may transmit the colds through touching surfaces like doorknobs, handrails, telephones and many other surfaces. You can then indirectly get the virus from touching these surfaces.
4. Kissing an infected person also increases the chances of getting the cold virus.
Symptoms of Colds
Common colds have hallmark symptoms such as:
1. Runny nose – increased mucus secretions develop as the body’s natural response to contain the virus and to reduce irritation of the nasal and air passages.
2. Sneezing – this reflex action is another natural bodily response done to expel the virus and other irritating materials found in the nasal cavity. Mucus also stimulates sneezing to reduce blocked nasal passages.
3. Nasal congestion – due to increased mucus production, nasal congestion develops during a cold, making a person with the cold unable to breathe properly through their nose which can then become worse when they are trying to sleep lying down.
4. Headache – increased mucus production, sneezing and stress can induce Headaches.
5. Sore throat – as a person with a cold sneezes and coughs, an intense irritation of the throat can develop.
6. Cough – the virus can also stimulate the bronchial passages to produce bronchial secretions, these must be expelled to in order to facilitate proper breathing. A person coughs to ultimately reduce secretions and to improve their breathing.
Treatments of Colds
There is no known real cure for the common cold, only treatments that can reduce symptoms. There are, however, natural treatments for colds, which include home remedies that can reduce nasal congestion such as steam inhalation, increased fluid intake and nebulization. Taking a healthy supply of vitamin C can also help to improve a person’s immune system health which in turn can then decrease the amounts of days that they would potentially be infected with the cold virus. You may take medications if a fever Fever and pain is present, but there is rarely a need to take antiviral medications since the cold will likely be over after several days. Increasing immune system health can ultimately prevent colds.
Paulina Nelega, RH, has been in private practice as a Clinical Herbalist for over 15 years. She has developed and taught courses in herbal medicine, and her articles on health have appeared in numerous publications. She is very passionate about the healing power of nature. Ask Dr. Jan