The common cold generally involves a runny nose, nasal congestion, and sneezing. You may also have a sore throat, cough, headache, or other symptoms. Over 200 viruses can cause a cold.
What Is Strep Throat ?
While many people use the terms sore throat, tonsillitis, and strep throat interchangeably, there are significant clinical differences between these conditions. Understanding the differences can give patients a better idea of how and when to be concerned and when to seek advice from a physician.
Strep throat is only one of many possible causes of throat infection and sore throat. While strep throat is most common in children and adolescents, it can affect people of all ages.
What's The Difference Between A Cold, Strep Throat, And Tonsillitis ?
A sore throat is often the first sign of a cold. However, a sore throat from a cold often gets better or goes away after the first day or two. Other cold symptoms such as a runny nose and congestion may follow the sore throat.
Strep throat, which is caused by Streptococcus bacteria, is one of the major causes of sore throats and tonsillitis. With strep throat, the sore throat is often more severe and persists. While a cold goes away on its own, strep throat usually requires antibiotics. Tonsillitis is a painful infection of the tonsils, the tissue masses located at the back of the throat.
We call it the “Common Cold” for good reason. There are over one billion colds in the United States each year. You and your children will probably have more colds than any other type of illness. Children average three to eight colds per year. They continue getting them throughout childhood. Parents often get them from the kids. Colds are the most common reason that children miss school and parents miss work.
Children usually get colds from other children. When a new strain is introduced into a school or day care, it quickly travels through the class.
Colds can occur year-round, but they occur mostly in the winter (even in areas with mild winters). In areas where there is no winter, colds are most common during the rainy season.
When someone has a cold, their runny nose is teeming with cold viruses. Sneezing, nose-blowing, and nose-wiping spread the virus. You can catch a cold by inhaling the virus if you are sitting close to someone who sneezes, or by touching your nose, eyes, or mouth after you have touched something contaminated by the virus.
People are most contagious for the first 2 to 3 days of a cold, and usually not contagious at all by day 7 to 10.
The Three Most Frequent Symptoms Of A Cold Are:
- Nasal congestion
- Runny nose
Get plenty of rest and drink lots of fluids. Over-the-counter cold remedies may help ease your symptoms. These won't actually shorten the length of a cold, but can help you feel better.
NOTE: Medical experts have recommended against using cough and cold drugs in children under age 6. Talk to your doctor before your child takes any type of over-the-counter cough medicine, even if it is labeled for children. These medicines likely will not work for children, and they may have serious side effects.
Antibiotics should not be used to treat a common cold. They will not help and may make the situation worse. Thick yellow or green nasal discharge is not a reason for antibiotics, unless it doesn't get better within 10 to 14 days. (In this case, it may be a sinus infection called sinusitis.)
New antiviral drugs can make runny noses completely clear up a day sooner than usual (and begin to ease the symptoms within a day). It is unclear whether the benefits of these drugs outweigh the risks.
Chicken soup has been used for treating common colds at least since the 12th century. It may really help. The heat, fluid, and salt may help you fight the infection.
Alternative Treatments That Have Also Been Used Include :
- Vitamin C
Possible Complications :
- Ear infection
- Worsening of asthma
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