Colds are the disease that affects us most often.
Adults catch a cold once or twice a year, while children under the age of seven catch a cold seven to nine times a year.
The common cold is an upper respiratory tract infection caused by a virus. Upper respiratory tract infection means inflammatory changes in the nose, throat and trachea. The condition is characterized by sore throat, lethargy and possibly low-grade fever. Adults rarely have a fever with the common cold. The early symptoms disappear within a few days and are followed by nasal congestion, runny nose and cough within 24 to 48 hours after onset. Nasal congestion and runny nose become the predominant symptoms. The snot can eventually become thick and plastery.
The symptoms are most pronounced around day 3-4 and begin to disappear around day 7. Children in the first year of life often get a high fever with a cold, they eat little, become grumpy and may get restless sleep due to nasal congestion.
What can I do myself?
Drink a lot, e.g. water or juice. Rest if you feel like it, you will recovery also without rest. When you or the baby is lying down, it may make sense to put an extra pillow under your head to reduce the tightness in your nose. Stay warm and avoid major physical and mental stress. If you exercise regularly, you should take a short break from training, or at least train with low intensity.
If necessary, the painkiller paracetamol can be used to reduce discomfort and fever. Mucolytic nasal spray or saline solution can relieve shortness of breath and improve night's sleep, which has also been shown in scientific studies.
The vast majority recover well on their own without any complications. Most cases of colds are over in a week's time, but both children and adults can cough persist for both 3 and 4 weeks. In exceptional cases, a cold can turn into a sore throat, sinusitis, ear infection or pneumonia. This most often manifests itself as increasing and new ailments when the cold was improving. In such cases, it is relevant to consult a doctor for treatment.
What can Eyr help with?
- Eyr can provide advice and guidance to both children and adults
- Eyr can order and prescribe a blood test
- Eyr can prescribe medicine
- Eyr may refer to further investigation if necessary
Reference: Norwegian Medical Handbook, NEL. Edited and medically quality assured by Dr. Theresa Franck, specialist in general medicine.