Most people get colds in the winter and spring, but it is possible to get a cold at any time of the year. Symptoms usually include sore throat, runny nose, coughing, sneezing, watery eyes, headaches and body aches.
Most people recover within about 7-10 days. However, people with weakened immune systems, asthma, or respiratory conditions may develop serious illness, such as pneumonia. Many different viruses can cause the common cold, but rhinoviruses are the most common. Viruses that cause colds can spread from infected people to others through the air and close personal contact. You can also get infected through contact with stool or respiratory secretions from an infected person. This can happen when you shake hands with someone who has a cold, or touch a doorknob that has viruses on it, then touch your eyes, mouth, or nose.
How to Protect Yourself and Others
You can help reduce your risk of getting a cold:
Wash your hands often with soap and water
Scrub them for 20 seconds, and help young children do the same. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. Viruses live on your hands, and regular handwashing can help protect you from getting sick.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
Viruses can enter your body this way and make you sick.
Stay away from people who are sick
Sick people can spread viruses that cause the common cold through close contact with others.
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If you have a cold, you should follow these tips to prevent viruses from spreading to other people:
• Stay at home while you are sick
• Avoid close contact with others, such as shaking hands
• Move away from people before coughing or sneezing
• Cough and sneeze into a tissue then throw it away, or cough and sneeze into your upper shirt sleeve, completely covering your mouth and nose
• Wash your hands after coughing, sneezing, or blowing your nose
• Disinfect frequently touched surfaces, and objects such as toys and doorknobs
How to Feel Better
There is no cure for a cold. To feel better, you should get lots of rest and drink plenty of fluids. Over-the-counter medicines may help ease symptoms but will not make your cold go away any faster. Antibiotics will not help you recover from a cold. They do not work against viruses, and they may make it harder for your body to fight future bacterial infections if you take them unnecessarily.
People experience irritation, hardness and roughness of skin. Incidents of itchy skin due to dryness and contact allergies due to detergents and chemicals also increase in this season. Cold temperatures result in poor blood circulation and widened capillaries and as a result, the skin suffers.
But the cold alone isn’t responsible for this. The drop in humidity in addition to the use of heaters indoors also results in drying out the skin. Here are some skincare tips
• Dose up on vitamins and minerals
• Go for garlic
• Use coconut oil