Some Fun Facts About Colds

I often ponder what I should write on my blog. But then I figure I should just tell you what I’m thinking about at the time. Because, hey. I’ve really got nothing else to write about.

This week I’ve been thinking about colds. Head colds. Well, really head colds that settle in your throat and make you feel like you are being stabbed with hot pokers, to be precise.  I really am feeling better now than I was earlier in the week, but since colds are what I’ve been thinking about I thought I would share with you.  And so, here are some fun facts about the common cold.

What is a “cold” anyway?

The common cold is a viral infectious disease that infects the upper respiratory system. It is also known as acute viral rhinopharyngitis, or acute coryza. So there.

Can I catch a cold by going out in the cold?

Experts say that going out when it is cold does not have any effect on the risk of catching a cold or spreading one. Sometimes when I have a cold, I intentionally go outside because I figure the cold might kill the germs. But that’s just me. I’m a little unusual.

Well, okay then. What causes a cold?

The common cold can be caused by more than 200 different viruses. Up to 50% of colds are caused by rhinoviruses.  As opposed to rhinoceroses.

Why do we cough?

Duh, so we can get the attention of sales clerks talking on their cell phones when we want to pay and get out of the store.  And we cough to clear our airways (lungs, throat, etc). Sometimes we cough because of irritations to our airways – either an inhaled irritant (like smoke) or due to an infection of the upper airways. Sometimes we cough because we feel like we have hot pokers being stabbed into our voice box.

Why do our noses run?

Because they can’t walk! HAH! I SLAY me! No, no. Viruses, like our friend the cold virus, get in there and attack the mucus membranes, causing extra watering and mucus production. Trust me on this one.

Ew. Mucus. What is Mucus?

Mucus is a slippery, slightly sticky fluid produced by membranes in the mouth, nose, throat and naughty bits. The mucus membrane traps anything inhaled…like viruses. And then it’s all over but the shouting. Or coughing.

And what should I do for a cold?

Gargle with salt water. Because my mother says to. And because it really does help. It kind of pickles your throat and kills the nasty little virus germies. And eat chicken soup. Because you just should, that’s all. Unless you’re vegetarian. Then you should eat vegetable soup. Which is what I’m going to do right now.

 

 

References:
http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/166606.php
http://www.drreddy.com/rhinitis.html
http://www.ivillage.com/why-does-gargling-salt-water-help-your-throat/4-n-142239
http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2007/jan/10/chicken_soup_common_cold/

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