Skip Nav
Meal Plan
Experts Say This Is the Number 1 Way to Lose Weight
Teyana Taylor
James Corden Hilariously Verbalises All Your Thoughts About Kanye West's "Fade" Video
Budget Friendly
21 High-Protein Dinners That Won't Break the Bank
Fitness
Yes, a Coffee and Walk Date Counts as Exercise — This Is Why

How to Tell the Difference Between Allergies and a Cold

Sort Your Sniffles: Allergy Symptoms vs. Cold Symptoms

For years, as the seasons changed, I would come down with a cold. A cold that never went away. I was plagued by a runny nose, an itchy throat, and watery eyes for at least a couple of months every Autumn. Eventually, I realised these symptoms weren't caused by a virus at all; they were all caused by allergies. Darn those weeds that bloom.

The good news: sorting out my symptoms meant I could actually treat them correctly. If you've been sniffling for days, take a look at this list to see you're suffering from a cold or allergies.

Itchy nose: Although allergies and colds both produce a runny nose and congestion, allergies create the uncomfortable and persistent itchy nose. The itch generally occurs in the back of the nose and is difficult to "scratch." Those suffering from nasal pruritus (the fanciest way in the world to say "itchy nose") often scrunch up their faces, like a bunny, to try to alleviate the discomfort.

The sneeze: Sneezing frequently, and sometimes quietly, is common with allergies. Allergy sneezes are an attempt to remove allergens from the nose. Sneezes from colds tend to be loud, deep, and infrequent and are attempts to clear bronchial congestion in the lungs.

Runny eyes: While eyes might occasionally water with a cold, they can run profusely with allergies.

Mucus colour: The colour of mucus your runny nose creates actually factors heavily into this discussion. Mucus, aka snot, is generally clear with allergies, whereas with a cold it tends to have a colour — yellow to green — which indicates infection. Sometimes pays to look at your tissue, just saying.

Cough: Coughing is most often associated with colds. An allergy might cause occasional coughing due to postnasal drip aggravating the back of the throat.

Dark circles under the eyes: This symptom is sometimes referred to poetically as the "allergy shiner." These "shiners" are caused by the inability of veins in the area to drain due to chronic nasal congestion. It is like a traffic jam in the area under your eyes. Common colds generally don't leave you looking like you got sucker punched in the eye.

If you do have think you have allergies, it's maybe best to stay away from triggers like, pollen and windy days. If you think you have a cold, read up on foods to eat when you're sick; hopefully these foods will help you feel better soon.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography
Around The Web
Join The Conversation
A Bedtime Routine to Help With Sleep
High-Protein Smoothie
Pitaya Superfood Smoothie Bowl Recipe
Cute Animals Eating Human Food
Nutritional Information of Nut Butters
Best Lunch Recipes For Weight Loss
150 Calorie Snack Recipes
How to Eat Chia Seeds the Right Way
Why You Gain Weight Overnight
How to Detox From a Sugar Binge

POPSUGAR, the #1 independent media and technology company for women. Where more than 75 million women go for original, inspirational content that feeds their passions and interests.

From Our Partners
Latest Health & Fitness
X