Flu and Cold

Influenza or the common cold are widespread conditions that cause symptoms such as a sore throat, runny nose, coughing sneezing, fever and more. These illnesses affect millions of people each year, most often between the month of September and March. Infants, children, older adults and those with a weakened immune system are at an increased risk of developing these conditions.

More serious upper respiratory infections may include bronchitis and pneumonia. Bronchitis often develops after a cold and may produce a fever, chest congestion or wheezing. It can also develop from cigarette smoke or other pollutants, and may be a chronic condition. Pneumonia is caused by a virus, bacteria or fungus and can range from mild to very severe causes, causing symptoms such as a high fever, chills, chest pain and cough with mucus.

These infections usually last for a few days or weeks and have no real cure, although there are plenty of home and over-the-counter treatment options available to relieve symptoms. Patients can often reduce their risk of getting or passing on a cold or flu by washing hands regularly and staying away from people who are sick. It is important for patients to get plenty of rest while sick and be sure to keep drinking liquids.