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What is common cold?

The common cold is a highly contagious disease. This is basically a viral infectious disease of the upper respiratory system and is caused by picornaviruses or corona viruses. Basically intense forms of this cold can also lead to fever and extreme and influenza. It has been seen that usually symptoms of a cold gets better after about one week, but can also last up to two. Usually these are experienced more severely in infants and young children. Even though the common cold is mild and self-limiting, there are some people who seek professional medical help and use over-the-counter drugs to get over the same. There are no antiviral drugs, which have been approved to treat or cure the infection and all forms of these medicines are palliative and treat symptoms only. Alternative treatments like Vitamin C mega dosage and Echinacea can also be taken.

Symptoms of the common cold

Some of the most common symptoms of the common cold include a running nose, sore throat, nasal congestion, sneezing and coughing. It can also lead to a pink eye along with muscle aches, fatigue, malaise, headaches, muscle weakness and uncontrollable shivering and loss of appetite. Usually the viral replication cycle begins within 8 to 12 hours and symptoms of the cold occur shortly thereafter. A sore or scratchy throat and other common symptoms indicate the beginning of the cold and this can last from 7 days up to a month.

Causes of the common cold

The common cold is caused due to infection, which can be blamed on more than 100 serotypes of rhinovirus, which is a type of picornavirus. Coronavirus, human Para influenza viruses and human respiratory syncytial virus along with adenoviruses, enteroviruses, or metapneumovirus can cause common cold. Also the lack of sleep has been associated with the common cold. It has also been seen that closed environments like classrooms, gyms, offices, etc. were areas where one had a higher chance of developing the cold or getting infected by it. There are various methods for preventing the common cold and this includes avoiding sitting next to the person who has a cold or sharing their food and accessories. Also having a healthy foods and getting regular exercises improves the immune system and helps to prevent the common cold.

Treatments for common cold

The common cold usually heals itself after 7 to 10 days but in some cases, this cold can last for longer periods.

Natural and ayurvedic:

However no medications or herbal or ayurvedic remedies are known to shorten the duration of illness. Often the treatment for this cold includes symptomatic supportive options, which can help to ease the cold side effects and maximize the comfort of the patient.

Home remedies:

It has been seen that the common cold is self-limiting and hence the host's immune system starts to deal with the same effectively. There is no requirement to go to the hospital for treating the common cold, but in case of fever or severe body ache, the doctor can be consulted.

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