Summer Cold – Symptoms, Causes, and Tips for Faster Recovery

Jul 04, 2022



Summer Cold – Symptoms, Causes, and Tips for Faster Recovery

A cold that you contract during summer is known as a summer cold. Most people think that seasonal changes cause colds, but they are actually caused by viruses. You can get a cold at any time of the year.

The summer cold is a common health issue and clears up within a few days with home remedies. Knowing its causes and symptoms can help you recover and get back on your feet.

Causes of Summer Colds

While cold symptoms can be caused by over 200 different viruses, the enterovirus family is usually responsible for the common cold. These can spread

  • By hand-to-hand contact with an infected person, or sharing utensils, towels, or other objects
  • Through air droplets when the infected person coughs, talks, or sneezes

You are likely to catch a cold if you touch your nose, mouth, or eyes after coming in contact with an infected person.

Summer Cold Symptoms

Symptoms of a summer cold usually begin after one to three days of exposure. These include:

  • Sore throat
  • Runny nose
  • Congestion
  • Headache
  • Cough
  • Sneezing
  • Low-grade fever

How to Know If It's Summer Cold or Allergies

Although summer colds and allergies are different health issues, they share similar symptoms, making it difficult to differentiate between them. However, there are differences.

1. Differences in Symptoms

While sneezing, runny nose, sore throat, and congestion symptoms are common to both colds and allergies, a cold will cause infection symptoms, like fever and sweating.

2. Length and Severity of Symptoms

Cold symptoms usually worsen before improving. Then, they clear up completely within one to two weeks. However, allergy symptoms will often last an entire season.

3. Beginning of Symptoms

With colds, each symptom can start at different times, whereas allergy symptoms usually all happen at once.

4. Changes in Symptoms

You probably have allergies if your symptoms worsen while traveling from one place to another. This is because allergies can appear with exposure to a new location’s pollens and triggering allergens.

5. Differences in Nasal Discharge

Cold-caused nasal discharge tends to be thick and yellowish or greenish, whereas “runny noses” from allergies tend to be watery and clear.

How to Recover from a Summer Cold Faster

There is no vaccine or medication to kill the viruses causing summer colds, but there are ways to treat the symptoms.

a) Get Plenty of Rest

Avoid excessive physical activity and stress to allow your body to devote more resources to fight the infection. Also, get plenty of sleep, as it strengthens your immune system and helps you recover quickly.

b) Eat Well and Stay Hydrated

Increase your fluid intake, especially water, to stay hydrated. While drinking hot tea can help soothe your symptoms, avoid beverages that may cause dehydration like coffee, energy drinks, and alcohol. Be sure to eat foods rich in vitamins, minerals, vitamin C, and zinc.

c) Wash Your Hands

Keeping your hands clean is the best way to avoid contracting the cold-causing virus, as it often spreads through hand-to-hand and then hand-to-face contact. It’s important to wash your hands regularly and thoroughly with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer or warm water and soap. Don’t touch your mouth, eyes, and nose with unwashed hands.

d) Spend Time Outdoors

Compared to outdoors, staying indoors (in an air-conditioned or enclosed space) may increase your risk of catching a summer cold. Try to spend some time in the sun, as the sun’s UV rays can help kill cold-causing viruses.

e) Consider Herbal Remedies

Though herbs cannot kill or fight a summer cold, they can boost your immune system, helping it combat the cold-causing viruses. You can use herbs like garlic, licorice root, echinacea, elderberry, and ginger.

f) Over-the-Counter Medications

Over-the-counter cough syrups, fever-reducing medications, and nasal decongestants can help ease your symptoms.

g) Use Humidifiers

You can use humidifiers to relieve symptoms, such as cough, runny nose, congestion, and sore throat.

How to Know If Your Summer Cold is Getting Worse and Needs Medical Attention

Children often get over colds quicker than adults and are usually sick for less than a week. Some adults may experience colds for up to two weeks or more, depending on their age, genetics, health condition, and habits, like smoking and alcohol consumption.

Visit a nearby urgent care center if your symptoms persist for more than three weeks, even after trying home remedies or over-the-counter medications.

If you are looking for an urgent care clinic near you to treat your summer cold, visit us today at Woodbridge Walk-In Urgent Care in Irvine, Fountain Valley Urgent Care, or Costa Mesa Urgent Care, CA. We will help ease your symptoms quickly with a treatment that is unique to your needs.



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