Determining If Its Allergies or a Cold
October 6, 2017
During this time of year, it’s difficult to determine if you’ve caught a cold, or it’s allergies. According to doctors in primary care naples fl residents have similar symptoms that occur both in colds and allergies, so it can be difficult to distinguish between the two, but experts say recognizing the symptoms will help you treat your ailment correctly.
How to Distinguish Among Colds and Allergies?
Sneezing is a natural defense of the body that seeks to eliminate external agents. The same physical reaction occurs both in the case of allergens and in the presence of cold viruses, therefore, sneezing is generally not the best symptom to distinguish between allergies and colds. When external agents, such as pollen are trapped in the small nose hairs they begin to tickle it. This tickling sensation causes the brain to trigger sneezing to expel allergens or virus from the nose.
Among the most common allergens that cause sneezing, we notice: dust, pollen, dead skin from animal hair and mold. Keep in mind if the sneezing occurs along with other symptoms listed below about allergies or colds, then it will be easier to understand which afflicts you.
Observe how your mucus looks after blowing your nose. Yes, it may seem a bit disgusting but looking at the mucus can help you understand if it’s allergies or a cold. If it is clear, it is likely that these are allergies. If it is yellow, green or greyish, it is more likely to be a cold.
Are you experiencing pain? Check if you feel intense pain or pressure in the nose, eyes and forehead. Sinus cavities are sunken air spaces that are located on the forehead, in the posterior area of the cheekbones and between the eyes. The mucus is released from the sinus cavities in order to keep allergens and foreign bodies away. The sinus cavity is typically painful due to colds as the virus could infect it.
Recognize Symptoms Exclusive to Allergies
Start by looking for rashes. When the body releases histamines as a reaction to allergies, the small blood vessels in the skin can expand causing the skin to swell and redden, and it’s one of the more common visible reactions. Do you feel itchy? In case of allergy, the areas most commonly affected by itching include: eyes, nose, ears, throat, lips and the surrounding area of the mouth. Do you have shortness of breath? Tubes can become narrow when inflamed making it difficult to take deep breaths, and this condition can be very dangerous if the inflammation gets worse. While you can take an antihistamine, it’s best to visit a primary care doctor if you’re experiencing trouble breathing.
What Are the Symptoms Exclusive to Colds
Cold symptoms generally persist for only 2-14 days maximum. The symptoms become more evident one or two days after the virus contact. If they last longer than 14 days, it could be allergy or bacterial infections. Also, when the body starts to fight an infection, like the cold virus, it releases pyrogens, which raise body temperature, so check if you have a fever. And infections make you feel weak and sore, not allergies. If you’re not sure whether you have a cold or allergies, and you’ve experienced discomfort for multiple days, without relief, it’s best to get evaluated by a physician.