Colds are very common these days. This type of infection is predisposed by many factors such as the constant changes in weather as well as the lack in knowledge of people with regards to this particular health problem. A cold is usually caused by a viral infection. This condition is also known to be transmittable or contagious. But the question is; how long is a cold contagious?
More about the Common Cold
Colds can actually be experienced by anyone no matter what the age or gender may be. Although colds can be treated without any treatment at all, this infection can be easily spread from one person to another. In addition to this, many scientists and experts are still unaware of how long EXACTLY is a person suffering from the condition is considered contagious. Some earlier studies have shown that a person with colds is considered contagious about 2 to 3 days prior to developing any signs and symptoms. Aside from this, the contagious period of cold is said to last until the person no longer show any of its symptoms. In other words, a person who has colds can be contagious for approximately two weeks.
When is the Common Cold Contagious?
It is said that the infectious period of colds can last for two weeks. Within those two weeks of being contagious, some studies have concluded that the peak of being able to transmit a cold can occur during the period of experiencing the cold symptoms. In other words, the highly infectious state happens when the symptoms of the condition is at its worst – from the second to the fourth day of the cold. However, we tend to become less contagious as the symptoms of the disease starts to decline or disappear.
Although colds are considered to be transmittable, the cold virus that causes this condition is said to be less contagious compared to the viruses that causes the flu or the RSV or respiratory syncytial virus. Fortunately, there are still some things that we can do in order to lessen the chances of transmitting the disease from one person to another. One of these is to isolate self from other people in order to limit physical or near contact which can easily spread the virus. If working or attending school, it is best to stay home and be absent so as to prevent the virus from being transmitted. Aside from isolation, another easy and very common yet effective preventive method against colds is regular hand washing. Hand washing is in fact considered to be the most effective technique in preventing the spread of any disease. Covering our mouths while coughing and/or sneezing is helpful in preventing the release of infected airborne droplets. However, these droplets can stay on the hands making hand washing very useful in avoiding the spread.
Aside from these preventive measures, having ourselves vaccinated against flu must be done once a year. Nevertheless, this vaccination will not prevent us from catching cold but it can lessen or reduce the risks. Staying away from crowded places or areas that are small and enclosed can also help in the prevention of the spread of the virus.
Symptoms of the Common Cold
In addition to our knowledge with regards to the different preventive measures against colds, it is also important for us to learn or to know how to identify the different symptoms that can be caused by this particular type of problem. The symptoms of colds can actually vary from one person to another. This means that not all the effects or the symptoms of this infection are present in all cases. Nevertheless, common body reactions from colds can be noticed such as the following:
• Constant sneezing and coughing
• Presence of rhinorrhea or runny nose with thick secretions
• Congested or clogged nose
• Body pain
• Presence of high temperature or fever
• Scratchy throat
• Teary eyes
These are just some of the facts and details with regards to the condition of colds. This includes the contagion period of the infection as well as the different symptoms and preventive measures for this particular health problem. Colds can be considered a very common ailment; nevertheless, we should never try to take this health problem for granted since experiencing this kind of condition can really affect our lives and as well as our normal routine.