Can you honestly say you can tell the difference between allergies and a cold?
If you think so, consider this: how many times have you heard someone sneeze and say "those are my allergies," and then a week later, they're nursing a terrible cold.
That would suggest that there's plenty of room for interpretation between the two afflictions and paying attention to ancillary symptoms might be the difference between the two. Some would argue, however, that the symptoms are stunningly similar, and that differentiating between them is largely difficult.
Sneezing, stuffy nose, headaches and congestion all relate back to allergies and colds, leaving those suffering from those symptoms to decipher exactly what they're dealing with at any given moment.
Perhaps the easiest way to tell exactly what you're dealing with is the duration of sneezing and whether anything else rears its ugly head after a few weeks.
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If all you're doing is sneezing, that's probably an allergy or an allergic reaction to something you came into contact with, whether it's just dry, cool air, pet dander or dust. Allergies don't include coughs, fever chills or body aches, all of which can be associated with a bad cold or even the flu.
A cold also should clear up within a few days or a week tops. Allergies, the sneezing and congestion specifically, can last for months. You rarely see colds that have that much staying power.
Once you've figured out exactly what you're dealing with, then it's time to start talking about treating it. In the case of allergies, you may want to do your best private detective work and determine by process of elimination exactly what is bothering you. That path might prove a bit daunting, so employing the services of an allergist might be a little less vexing thanks to some routine blood tests.
Now that you know your allergies backward and forward, it's time to get rid of them. Medicine certainly can do the trick, but what about a more unconventional approach.
Dr. Susanne Bennett is the author of "The 7 Day Allergy Makeover: A Simple Program to Eliminate Allergies and Restore Vibrant Health from the Inside Out." Bennett leads allergy suffers through a comprehensive approach to nixing allergy symptoms for good and allowing you to live free of them for the foreseeable future.
As far as colds go, there's really not much you can do as far as doctors are concerned. Rarely are antibiotics prescribed, since the common cold is a virus and not a bacterial infection, unless of course that cold turns into something more serious.
Colds can be helped by medicine, but nothing cures the cold; any medicine you take will only help relieve the symptoms. One product that resides as a favorite for both cold and allergy sufferers is nasal spray to relieve the aforementioned congestion and headaches associated with both. Boogie Mist stands out as one of the more renowned choices, since it is non medicated and perfect for all age groups.
Nothing trumps rest, however, as quite the cure all when it comes to the cold.
Figuring out exactly what ails you is of little consolation when you're not feeling well. But knowing exactly what you're dealing with is the first step toward a speedy recovery.
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