The common cold is just that: common.
Affecting nearly a billion people each year in the United States alone, it seems to be part of our standard fall and winter routine — unwelcomed, of course.
Although it can affect anyone at any time throughout the year, it is most prevalent during the colder months, in times when people spend more time indoors with one another.
Most people who contract the cold experience mild to moderate symptoms that eventually dissipate on their own within 2 weeks.
There is currently no cure for the cold virus, but various effective ways exist to reduce symptoms and start feeling better sooner.
Let’s explore the common cold virus in more detail, including what it is, what symptoms it can cause, and how to get rid of a cold.
What Is a Cold?
The common cold is a contagious respiratory virus caused by 200 different viruses. It is most often caused by rhinovirus and is most common in children and the elderly.
It is contagious from the day of infection until your symptoms resolve completely.
A cold spreads from person to person through the air and close personal contact. It may also spread through direct contact with an infected person’s stools or respiratory secretions.
Cold symptoms most often affect the nose and throat, ranging from mild to severe.
Common cold symptoms include
- Sore throat
- Post-nasal drip
- Runny nose
- Stuffy nose
- Watery eyes
Symptoms typically take 2 to 3 days to appear following infection.
How to Get Rid of a Cold
While there is no hard and fast way to get rid of a cold completely, there are effective ways to mitigate symptom severity and allow your body to heal.
It is important to note that the best way to treat a cold is by treating the direct symptoms you are experiencing.
Some cold treatments may include
- Proper hydration with clear liquids like water, juice, or soup broth
- Adequate rest
- OTC anti-inflammatories, pain relievers, and decongestants
- Throat lozenges or a saltwater gargle to relieve a sore throat
- OTC saline nasal drops or spray
- A cool-mist vaporizer or humidifier
If your symptoms worsen over time or become severe, you may require medical intervention treatment and prescription medication to promote proper healing. Visit Thibodaux Regional Urgent Care at the first sign of a worsening cold.
Effective Cold Treatment in Thibodaux
A lingering cold can cause debilitating symptoms that last weeks.
Thorough diagnosis and effective treatment are crucial to reducing symptoms and feeling better sooner.
You should visit us now if you or a loved one has a cold and are experiencing
- Trouble or rapid breathing
- Fever that lasts more than 4 days
- Symptoms that last more than 10 days with little to no improvement
- Symptoms that improve but then return or worsen, such as a fever
- Worsening chronic medical conditions caused by the cold
If you or a loved one is experiencing a cold that won’t go away or continues to worsen over time, you should visit an urgent care for further diagnosis and treatment.
Don’t delay care. Thibodaux Regional Urgent Care is open seven days a week. No appointments are required. Simply walk in today to get the cold treatment you need now.