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When Your Child Gets a Common Coldfrom: Maxx Family Life
Common Cold is caused by an upper respiratory system infection due to a cold virus. This infection affects the ears, nose and throat. There are about two hundred known viruses which are responsible for common cold, out of which rhinovirus is the most common. Due to the great number of viruses, there isn't any shot or vaccination that helps prevent a cold. The best solution to a cold is the body's immune system. The majority of children's visits to their doctor is due to a cold. Estimate are a child catches cold about eight times each year lasting up to about a week.
Cold viruses usually spread by sneezing and coughing by the infected person. The wet and slimy substance inside the nose, mucus, is the carrier of the virus. When a child coughs or sneezes, the mucus drops come out of the mouth and when other persons breaths in these droplets they can catch a cold. Colds can also spread by handling of contaminated items such as towels, door knobs, school desks, etc. If a person touches a contaminated towel and then touches his nose or eyes, there's a great chance of getting an infection. Thus it's a good habit to wash the hands regularly and keep them germ-free.
Cold viruses have docking points which helps it stick to the interior of the nose. It then controls the nose's cell lining and begins to multiply into more viruses. White cells are responsible to fight these viruses inside the nose. They even kill them and finally get victory after seven days. Sneeze and runny nose actually prevent the viruses to affect the rest of the body parts.
A person sneezes when the nerves inside the nose detect irritation and take the help of the lungs to push them out by letting out a blast of air through the mouth and the nose. The air, while sneezing, comes out at the speed of hundred miles per hour faster than cars on the road.
Once the child contracts cold viruses, they take two to three days to develop and show symptoms. There are many symptoms of cold. The child becomes cranky. He'll complain of headache, blocked nose, cough, sneeze, sore throat, muscle ache, nasal cavity congestion and will become exhausted. Low fever can also accompany, along with body chills. Medicines don't speed up the process of healing as the viruses complete their cycle irrespective of the intake. But they do suppress further growth and make the child feel better.
Parents should supervise the dosage of medicine being taken and they should follow their doctor's prescription. Decongestants help to decrease the swollen nose lining, which makes breathing easier. Antihistamines help to dry the mucus and stops sneezes and runny noses. Ibuprofen and acetaminophen can be given if the child is experiencing headache and muscle ache.
At home, parents should provide hot food and drink to the child as they help to soothe soar throats and coughs. The heat also clears up the mucus. Chicken soup is an age old remedy for the common cold. Steamy showers are another good option as they help with stuffy nose. Itchy eyes, scratchy throat and stuffy throats can also be treated with humidifiers which spray cool and fine mist. They also loosen the mucus. The nose should be blown regularly to let the mucus out of the body. It's a good idea to use disposable tissues instead of regular handkerchiefs. Complete bed rest for a day or two is greatly suggested.
The best precaution that can be taken is eating healthy food and balanced diet so as to strengthen the immune system. Your child must exercise regularly in order to stay fit and sleep adequately. Children who are stressed out are more frequently prone to getting a cold. Therefore, it's helpful if your kid gets extra rest and goes to bed early some days. When a child is suffering from a cold, he should relax and take bed rest as much as possible.
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