How to avoid a summer cold?

How to avoid a summer cold?

Summer colds are real and equally irritating as the winter cold. They last for days and make you feel worse than a cold that you normally experience in winters. There are many tricks that you can try to avoid a summer cold.

Generally, people assume that summer colds are not that common. A summer cold usually hits you between June and October as National Institutes of Health (NIH) says. Summer or winter, you should not ignore it and always follow the necessary steps on cold management.

There are hundreds of viruses that may cause cold, irrespective of the season. Summer colds arise from a different virus than that of winter cold.

Enterovirus is responsible for most of the summer cold cases. Whereas rhinovirus causes the winter cold. Both of these not only make their way to the respiratory system but also cause stomach distress.

The symptoms of both types of colds show up as sneezing, nasal congestion, and fever. Like winter cold, summer cold also spreads through respiratory droplets and even fecal matter. It is necessary to practice good personal hygiene especially after using the bathroom.

Following is a list of best tricks on how to avoid a summer cold.

Avoid moving between different temperatures

A frequent movement between warm and cold temperature adds to the risk of summer flu. In summer, it is warmer outside and inside spaces are air-conditioned. When people go come from warm to cold or cold to warm temperature, they become more vulnerable to sickness.

The cold temperature reduces the body’s defense and throat by causing a constriction. If the virus is already inside your body, this is a perfect time for it to invade the systems. Higher use of air conditioner also causes headache, mucus irritation and multiple interlinked conditions. It is better to watch out for such drastic temperature shifts to avoid summer flu.

Do not exercise when you have cold

The health experts believe that doing exercise in the mild cold is acceptable but overburdening your body will make the condition worse. For example, if you are already battling with a summer cold, exercising more will add up to your vulnerability to experience worse cold symptoms.

In addition to this, the sedentary lifestyle holders are an easy target for the winter cold caused by an enterovirus. If the symptoms of cold show above the neck i.e. sore throat, runny nose, or nasal congestion, it is perfectly okay to carry out the exercise.

But if the symptoms spread to below the neck i.e. wheezing, shortness of breath, muscle pain, and fever, exercise is not a good option. In this case, let your body rest and recover from the condition.

Take proper care of yourself for long

The symptoms of summer flu can drag to two or three weeks. People often share their experience where summer cold makes them feel even worse than winter cold.

The causative agent of summer cold i.e. enteroviruses are more reliant than many of the viruses and can tolerate all weather extremes easily. You need to be mentally prepared for this. The virus symptoms may take weeks to completely go away.

The symptoms heal with time

Many medicines can ease the winter cold symptoms. However, you only feel better once the virus leaves your body. Here, many home remedies i.e. gargling with salt water can help to ease the symptoms. In both summer and winter cold, it is necessary to keep your body hydrated.

Drink plenty of water to make up for it. For summer cold, pay special attention to your water intake and avoid alcohol and caffeine. Both alcohol and caffeine can make you dehydrated and thus worsen the condition.

Do not confuse summer cold with allergy

Summer cold lasts for one or two weeks. That is why people often confuse them with allergies. The allergy symptoms may last for days, weeks or months and as per environment, the onset of symptoms change.

However, both conditions cause a runny nose, nasal congestion, sniffling and difficulty in breathing. The only difference in symptoms is that allergies do not cause a fever or muscle pain.

If you are unclear about your condition, look at your eyes for the symptoms. In allergic attacks, the eyes tend to be puffy and bloodshot whereas, in summer cold, there is nothing like this.

The takeaway

The only treatment of summer cold is patience and personal care. Some over the counter medicines and home remedies can help you feel better. But it takes at least one week for the symptoms to completely go away.


The author is a Medical Microbiologist and healthcare writer. She is a post-graduate of Medical Microbiology and Immunology. She covers all content on health and wellness including weight loss, nutrition, and general health. Twitter @Areeba94789300

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