Children With Colds: Signs And Treatment

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Discover the typical triggers of colds in kids and the ways you can alleviate the symptoms.

It’s a familiar scenario: you hear your child coughing and sneezing and assume it’s the flu, only to find out it’s just a common cold when you visit your pediatrician. To avoid unnecessary trips to the doctor, it’s important to recognize the early signs of coughs and colds in your child and know how to manage their symptoms at home.

What Causes the Common Cold?

Numerous viruses can infect the upper respiratory tract and cause a cold. According to Mayo Clinic, children under six are at the greatest risk of catching a cold, while adults typically experience two to three colds per year.

Risk Factors

Your child is more susceptible to catching a cold if:

  • They have a weakened immune system
  • They are frequently exposed to large groups of people
  • They have a pre-existing chronic illness
  • You live in a region with a cool climate or frequent rainfall.

Symptoms

After being exposed to the virus that causes the common cold, symptoms may arise in a few days. While the symptoms can differ from person to person, the following are common signs that your child may have a cold:

  • Runny nose
  • Coughing
  • Blocked nose
  • Sore throat
  • Experiencing feverishness
  • Headaches
  • Feeling fatigued

Home Remedies

The common cold typically lasts for one to two weeks. To allow your child to recover fully and prevent the spread of the virus in school, it is advisable to let them rest at home. You can help speed up their recovery with the following remedies:

  • Always have OTC cold medications that are specifically designed for children, such as Neozep for Kids, readily available.
  • Encourage your child to drink more fluids to stay hydrated, which may help loosen congestion and prevent dehydration. Avoid giving sugary beverages like soda and juice.
  • Use a warm saline solution to make a rinse for your child if they have difficulty eating or swallowing due to a swollen or itchy throat. OTC nasal sprays like Nasoclear can also help with congestion and nasal irritation.
  • Serve your child’s favorite soup as warm liquids can soothe their irritated throat and alleviate congestion.
  • Utilize an air humidifier in your child’s room to add moisture to the air and help decongest their airways.

To Prevent The Common Cold

The common cold is easily transmitted through the air or contaminated objects. Educate your child about practicing good hand hygiene and covering their mouth when they cough or sneeze. It’s best to avoid sharing utensils with someone who has a cold and if you’re visiting a friend or relative in the hospital, consider leaving your child at home to avoid the risk of infection.

Medical Disclaimer

Although the medications mentioned can be bought without a prescription, it’s important to seek advice from your child’s doctor before administering any form of medication, including vitamins. If an allergic or adverse reaction occurs, discontinue use immediately. Keep your healthcare provider informed about all the medications your child is taking or has taken in the past to ensure they are prescribed the appropriate medicine.