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Mystery Solved - Summer Cold or Seasonal Allergies

By Sandy Schroeder

As summer moves ahead, a miserable cold or heavy blast of allergies can slow everything way down. Just as everyone else  is soaking up the sunshine and planning great trips, you may find yourself grounded with sneezing, coughs and total fatigue.

Pinning down the problem is easier if you start with a checklist like this one from WellAndGood. See if your symptoms fit a cold or allergies.

Mucus tells the story -  Dr. Sander says, “Mucus is commonly pretty clear and does not cloud up at all in allergies.” In colds, mucus tends to be thicker and may be green or yellow if there is a bacterial infection. If the cold persists or deepens with signs of bacteria, see your doctor. 

Fever shows up - A cold can generate a low-grade fever, while allergies never create fevers. Take care of your fever and see your doctor if it goes up and stays up.

Sore throats point to a cold - Runny noses and coughs often include a sore throat when there is a cold. Allergies may create an itchy throat instead. For cold relief try tea with lemon and honey or cough drops.

You may ache all over - If you have not just completed a workout, the culprit may be a cold. Allergies can generate muscle and joint aches, but colds are much more likely to make you ache a lot. Keep moving but try to get some extra sleep to let your body bounce back.

Energy just evaporates - Colds can quickly lower energy levels. Allergies make you feel terrible, but usually you can carry on with normal tasks.

Itchy signals - When your mouth, throat, nose and eyes all itch, allergies are at work, according to the Mayo Clinic. Colds usually bring congestion when they hang around.

Nothing tastes good - Colds can make you feel nauseous or just not hungry, but allergies seldom impact the appetite.

You just feel lousy - Colds persist wherever you are, but allergies may go up and down depending on where you go. If you are outside attracting pollen or petting a cat, allergies may flare up. Then if you go inside and sit in an air-conditioned room allergies may settle down.

Quickly spotting what’s going on may help you provide the right treatment to reduce discomfort and help you get back to normal.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Zionsville, Ind.

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