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The common cold is a widespread respiratory illness that affects millions of people each year. It’s so common that children may get it 5 to 10 times a year, while adults can get it 2 to 4 times a year. A cold is more often considered a minor inconvenience and is significantly less severe than the flu (Influenza).
Recognising the symptoms of a cold is essential for early intervention and better management of symptoms, including:
Fevers are less common in adults, however can occur in infants and young children. It’s important to consult with a healthcare practitioner as symptoms can vary between person to person and could indicate other illnesses.
The common cold is primarily caused by viruses, with rhinoviruses being the most prevalent. These viruses are highly contagious and can be easily transmitted from person to person through respiratory droplets.
It is almost impossible to completely avoid exposure to the viruses that cause the common cold. However, taking preventative measures can significantly reduce the chance of infection and transmission:
A healthcare practitioner would be able to diagnose a common cold through a physical examination and review of medical history and symptoms. Lab tests are generally unnecessary unless symptoms persist or worsen over an extended period of time, or complications arise.
Common colds usually resolve on their own within a week or two. They are viral infections, meaning antibiotics will be ineffective. Treatment options are aimed to alleviate symptoms and promote the recovery process:
Disclaimer: this can affect individuals differently and on a case by case basis. It it best to consult with your health practitioner to seek medical advice and receive a personalised diagnosis, and treatment plan.
Interests: Critical Care & Emergency
Education: Doctor of Medicine at Notre Dame University, Western Australia
Hobbies: Enjoys leisure time at the beach and playing tennis
Interests: General Medicine
Education: Bachelor of Medicine & Surgery
Hobbies: Enjoys working out, travelling and eating out
Interests: Preventative Healthcare
Education: Doctor of Medicine at University of New South Wales
Hobbies: Enjoys working in the garden outside
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