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Common cold vs seasonal allergies: Difference and effective treatments

Distinguishing between a common cold and seasonal allergies can be challenging due to their overlapping symptoms. However, understanding the underlying causes and differences can help you seek appropriate treatment.

Written By : India TV Lifestyle Desk Edited By : Surabhi Shaurya
New Delhi
Published on: October 20, 2023 13:01 IST
Common cold vs seasonal allergies
Image Source : FREEPIK Common cold vs seasonal allergies

As the seasons change, many of us find ourselves sneezing, sniffling, and feeling under the weather. Is it a common cold, or could it be seasonal allergies? Both conditions can share similar symptoms, but they are caused by different underlying factors and require distinct treatment approaches. In this article, India TV will explain the difference between common cold and season allergies, their treatment and more. 

WHAT IS THE COMMON COLD? 

The common cold is a viral infection that can be caused by several different viruses, most commonly rhinoviruses. It spreads through close contact with an infected person or contaminated surfaces. Symptoms of a cold may include a sore throat, cough, congestion, sneezing, and a mild fever. Unlike allergies, a cold usually comes with a gradual onset and lasts for about a week.

TREATMENT FOR COMMON COLD

Treatment for the common cold often focuses on symptom relief.  Rest, staying hydrated, and over-the-counter cold remedies can help ease discomfort.

If symptoms persist or worsen, it's advisable to consult a healthcare professional.

WHAT ARE SEASONAL ALLERGIES? 

Seasonal allergies, on the other hand, are triggered by exposure to allergens such as pollen, grass, mold, and pet dander. When your immune system perceives these substances as harmful, it releases histamines, leading to symptoms like sneezing, runny or stuffy nose, itchy or watery eyes, and an itchy throat. Allergy symptoms tend to recur each year during the specific season when the allergen is prevalent.

Treatment for seasonal allergies

Treatment for seasonal allergies focuses on reducing the allergic response. Antihistamines, decongestants, and nasal corticosteroids can help alleviate symptoms. Allergen avoidance strategies, like keeping windows closed during high pollen seasons, can also be effective.

COMMON COLD vs SEASONAL ALLERGIES: Key Differences

  1. Cause: A common cold is caused by viruses, while seasonal allergies are triggered by exposure to allergens.

  2. Onset: Colds often come on gradually, while allergy symptoms can appear suddenly when exposed to allergens.

  3. Duration: Colds typically last about a week, whereas seasonal allergies can persist throughout the entire allergy season.

  4. Fever: Colds may cause a mild fever, while allergies do not.

  5. Treatment: Cold treatment focuses on symptom relief, while allergy treatment aims to reduce the allergic response and prevent exposure to allergens.

 

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