The Cycle of a Cold

Learn the Cycle of a Cold

Tis the season for resolutions, super bowl, winter weather and colds! I became a Stay-at-home-Mom in July and am finishing my second cold in the past 6 weeks! Since I do not work full time and have been more sick then when I did! I do help in my son’s kindergarten class and perhaps I am carrying crud home, but anyhow-it sucks!

Use the Correct Medications

I have my medicine cabinet full of my usual go-to medications and when I was at my regular check up. I had discussed the end of my cold with my Doctor and I come to find out that my last cold was probably prolonged. This is because I used the wrong medications at the wrong times. That was her answer and so I researched a bit about why certain meds are needed at only certain stages of a cold. That being said-to understand the science of a cold, you can really help yourself (and family) out and this cold I am getting over know is about gone and its been 5 days! Much shorter then the last one. So, I decided to break it down to share with you in as simple a format as possible…… The Cycle of a Cold


The Cycle of a Cold

The Infection

You get the cold virus by being exposed (by air) when someone coughs or sneezes. The particles left behind after the sneeze or cough can linger in the air for hours waiting for a host or can land on objects until touched by a potential host. Once that hand that touched the virus gets to your mouth-you are now a new host! The virus will attach itself to membranes of cells in the respiratory system-typically from the nose, mouth or throat. Have you washed your hands lately?

Once it fuses to the cell

The virus makes its way to the nucleus (center) of the cell. It then creates a viral DNA and multiplies. It leaves the cell and starts infecting surrounding tissue cells. This infection of the virus DNA can last 1-3 days. These are days PRIOR to symptoms. This is where you need that Vitamin C boost. Essentially, you have to know 1-2 days within being exposed and then start taking that Airborne or other immunity boosters. Helped in the classroom yesterday or today and saw kids wiping noses? Support your immune system right now!

You are Infected

Get a day or less you will start to see those symptoms emerge! The sneezing, body aches and sore throat will be just the start. You can gargle warm water with 1/4-1/2 teaspoon of salt twice daily to ease throat pain. The infection stage lasts 1-7 days! Keep on that Vitamin C! It may lessen that to a number closer to 1 day instead of 7!

No hiding the symptoms now

It has been 1-2 days post infection began and you have a runny nose, scratchy throat that will turn into nasal congestion and a cough. These symptoms can last up to 2 weeks! The cough is typically the end of the symptoms. Your bodies way of saying good riddance and forcing that virus out! It is also the stage of the cold you have the most fatigue. If there is any day to stay in with the cold, it is the first few days you feel the symptoms as you are in a contagious state still. Sleep helps your body heal. As your body is creating mucus during the cold, make sure you stay very hydrated with the non-caffeine beverages so you can thin out that mucus. A cool-mist humidifier also does wonders! If you do not have one handy then make yourself a steamy bath-close the bathroom door and stay in the steamy room for a bit! Last, wash those hands! Have the family be washing hands too! When that virus hits your home-everyone should wash hands in the hottest water setting tolerable for a minimum of 30 seconds with an anti-bacterial soap.

What do I use to treat my colds?

I think I found the cycle that works best now! Airborne for days ASAP after being around anyone sick or as soon as I start to feel off. If a cold emerges, I use a Multi-symptom Mucinex with acetaminophen (tylenol additive). As soon as the mucus starts and the runny nose turns to a congestion, I use a Sudafed PE and also use the Mucinex on nights that a cough is keeping me awake. (Delsym is also a favorite cough medicine of mine). I keep a lotion kleenex around and in the car. I like Puffs with Vicks Lotion so my nose doesn’t dry out. That’s it! About 2 days of Mucinex and 1-2 days of Sudafed and I have not overdosed on cold medications which can leave you with upset stomachs you have to deal with once the cold ends! 

Well now you know all about the cycle of the cold! Please leave your comments below. Did I miss anything?

Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any of the above brands. I am not a professional and have researched several reputable websites and organizations to learn what I share above. This information is only my own thoughts and knowledge.

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