Cold, Flu, and Allergy- How To Distinguish Them

Cold, Flu and allergy are common conditions that affect many people across the world. Unfortunately, most people cannot tell them apart because they have very similar symptoms. The three conditions are characterized by sore throats, stuffy or a runny nose and sneezing. You can also experience coughs, headaches and fatigue with either of them, making it even harder to know which condition you have. So, how can you differentiate them? 

The First Thing Is To Determine The Root Cause 

Just like with many other health conditions, to differentiate between colds, flu and allergies, you need to know what caused them. While colds and flu result from viruses that are passed when there is contact with an infected person, allergies occur when your immune system reacts to a trigger. The trigger causing the immune reaction could be in the form of a mold, pet fur, or pollen. 

Determining How Often They Occur 

Another way of telling the difference between these conditions is by observing how often they occur. Most of the people may catch a cold a few times a year when the weather changes. But for allergies, they can come and go quite regularly, especially when you are exposed to the trigger. 

As highlighted earlier, your immune system may react to different triggers. Therefore, you will experience the symptoms depending on when and how often you are exposed to the trigger. For instance, if you are allergic to pet fur, dust or mold, you are likely to experience the symptoms regularly throughout the year. Similarly, if you are allergic grass and trees, you are likely to experience the symptoms during spring. 

Prevention for cold, flu and allergies 

The key to treating cold, flu and allergies is by keeping off the triggers. For cold and flu, you can stay away from them by washing your hands regularly and minimizing contact with the infected people. For allergies, you can prevent the symptoms by staying in a clean environment and avoiding the triggers as much as you can. 

When To See An Allergist 

If the flu-like symptoms persist, it is time to see an allergist. Allergic reactions will result in frequent sneezing, wheezing or nasal congestion. With the help of allergists Darien il, these asthma-like symptoms can be controlled or prevented, thus improving your quality of life. 

Controlling and preventing allergy isn’t a walk in the park. It calls for skills, planning and lots of patience. By working closely with the allergist, you can develop a treatment plan that will help in addressing your condition. The allergy treatment aims to enable you to lead a normal and symptom-free life. 

What Is Included In The Treatment Plan 

The allergy treatment plan includes allergy testing, which enables the allergist to determine what triggers are involved. The plan also includes prevention education, which will equip you with the necessary knowledge on how to avoid the allergens. The allergist may also prescribe certain medications to treat allergies.


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