If you are suffering from congestion with a runny nose or you are sneezing and coughing. Your primary thought may be that you have a cold. Yet, these are also signs of allergies. These familiar symptoms puzzle lots of folks.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), adults are able to catch colds thrice a year. Children are likely to have even more colds in a year.
On the other hand allergies are also very widespread. According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, about 50 million people in the United States are suffering from allergies.
Is it Allergies or a Cold?
Throughout cold and flu season, it’s a pretty safe bet that congestion, sneezing with a runny nose is a sign that you are coming down with something. The time when trees are blossoming or their leaves are falling, how can you make out if you’ve a cold or it is just an allergy?
What is a Cold?
A cold, also identified as “the common cold,” is caused by a virus. Many diverse types of viruses are responsible for colds. Whereas the symptoms and severity may differ, colds in the main share some of the same basic characteristics.
Here are a number of key features of the common cold:
- Colds are transmitted through virus droplets from one person to another person.
- In addition to coughing and sneezing, cold symptoms can take in a sore throat and a runny, stuffy nose.
- Further severe colds can also cause headaches, fevers, and body aches.
- Recovery from a cold is usually speedy. The typical interval of a cold is stuck between 7 to 10 days.
- If symptoms last more than a week or two, the virus may have throw in to a more serious infection, such as a sinus infection, pneumonia, or bronchitis.
- People with allergies are at high risk of catching colds.
Despite its name, you be able to catch a “cold” at any time of the year, even in summer. As mentioned before, The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guesstimate that the average healthy adult catches two or three colds for every year.
Young children possibly will get even more colds because of their less mature immune systems.
What are Allergies?
Allergies occur when your immune system has an adverse reaction to an irritant. When you’re exposed to an allergy trigger, identified as an allergen, your immune system releases chemicals called histamine. The release of histamine is responsible for causing allergy symptoms.
Allergies and colds share a few familiar symptoms, such as:
- sore throat
- runny nose
- nasal congestion
- watery eyes
Allergies can also cause rashes and itchy eyes. The common cold characteristically does not.
Every year, over 50 million Americans experience allergies. Seasonal allergens such as tree, grass, and weed pollen are widespread triggers, but you might be allergic to certain substances year-round.
Other allergy triggers can include:
- dust mites
- animal dander or saliva, such as from a cat or dog
- foods, such as peanuts, tree nuts, milk, and eggs
The difference between Allergies and a Cold
If nasal congestion, watery eyes and recurrent sneezing have left you miserable this spring, it’s moment to get some relief. Springtime can be a twofold whammy for your upper respiratory tract since it is both allergy season and the tail end of cold season. Interpret how to make a distinction between the two and effectively treat your symptoms.
Both conditions characteristically involve sneezing, a runny nose and congestion. There are some differences, though. Moreover, colds as a rule include coughing and a sore throat, but these symptoms can also occur in people with hay fever who have post-nasal drip. Itchy eyes are common for seasonal allergies, but exceptional for colds.
People should mull over the following differences when trying to categorize whether they have a cold or an allergy:
- Itchy with watery eyes are often telltale signs and symptoms of an allergy.
- A fever can occur with a brutal cold, especially in children, but is not an allergy symptom
- A sore throat can arise with allergies but is more common with a cold
- Body aches are not common with allergies while they may be common with a cold
- Some people with allergies also develop eczema, which is not a symptom of a cold
Together colds and allergies can cause viruses and bacteria to amass in the sinuses and lower airways, which can lead to more serious infections.
If your symptoms are lasting more than 10 days or getting worse, see your doctor.