The common cold is a contagious viral infection that can affect children and adults. Infants, preschool-aged children and those with weakened immune systems are prone to the common cold, says the Mayo Clinic. In fact, more than 200 viruses can cause the common cold but the rhinovirus is the most common culprit for your symptoms.
According to MedlinePlus, nasal congestion and a runny nose are typical symptoms for the common cold. The blood vessels in your nose become irritated and your nose becomes swollen when you suffer from nasal congestion. As a result, less air is able to enter your nose and you will have difficulty breathing through it. Nasal congestion usually lasts for a week or less. You may also drain clear or green fluid from your nose when you suffer from a runny nose. Keep a tissue at hand when this occurs.
The Mayo Clinic states that a sore or itchy throat is another common cold symptom. The fluid from a runny or congested nose can run along the back of your throat and result in throat discomfort. This is known as post-nasal drip. Simply gargling with a glass of salt water can temporarily relieve the itchiness and soreness.
Sneezing is a typical manifestation of the common cold and a reaction to a nasal irritant. You are actually releasing a burst of air from your mouth and nose when you sneeze, states MedlinePlus. Sneezing can occur intermittently, especially when your cold symptoms are mild.
Other Cold Symptoms
A cough, headache, poor appetite and muscle aches are other common symptoms of a mild cold. In some instances, you may also experience a headache. A cough is a means for your body to rid itself of any foreign material such as mucus in your throat and airways, states MedlinePlus. You may also experience a sharp, dull or pulsating pain on one or more sides of your head. Lack of sleep and poor appetite are common causes of a headache. The cold virus can aalso cause muscle discomfort.