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Is it a Cold or Allergies? Symptoms, Duration, & Triggers are clues

November 9, 2019


I’m Dr. Edo Paz with K Health and I’m
here to help you tell the difference between a cold and allergies. Both cold and allergies have a lot of overlapping symptoms both involve your body’s immune system fighting
against a foreign invader. So how can you tell apart a cold from allergies? Well, the first relates to the symptoms
you’re feeling. Although both can involve coughing and stuffy nose, with allergies
you’re more likely to have red and itchy eyes. With a cold, you’re more likely to
have a fever, body aches, and general fatigue. The second is the duration of symptoms. In the case of a cold, your symptoms should
last anywhere from a couple of days up to about a week and a half. In the case
of allergies, your symptoms will last as long as the trigger is around you, so
this could take up to weeks or even months. It’s very important to figure out
whether you have a cold or allergies because the treatment for the two can be
very different. In the case of a cold caused by a virus, we usually tell our
patients to drink plenty of fluids and take an over-the-counter pain reliever
like Tylenol or Advil. This helps with the aches and pains and
helps lower your fever as well. In the case of allergies we usually recommend
an over-the-counter antihistamine like Claritin or Zyrtec. If you have any other
questions about this important topic download the K app and complete a health dialogue. There you can learn about how people like you were diagnosed and
treated. You can also chat in real-time with myself or another board-certified
physician. It’s a great way to get personalized health care.

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