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Do You Have An Allergy Or A Cold?

A lot of times, people find it difficult to tell the difference between a common cold and an allergy because they usually start out with similar symptoms. Here are some pointers to help you clearly differentiate between the two.

Photo credit_Intelligent Medicine


Clear Mucus

At first, in both cases, mucus is usually clear. However, in the case of the cold, the mucus starts to thicken over time. Allergies on the other hand have clear mucus throughout its duration.

Dry Cough

For colds, even if they might start out dry, mucus production and sore throat are most likely to manifest in later days. Allergies might cause some throat irritation sometimes but its not nearly as painful as a sore throat.

The Symptoms Persist

Colds tend to run their natural course over the space of two to three days. Allergies, however, tend to linger for long periods of time until they are properly dealt with. On the flip side, it is possible that allergic symptoms fade when the subject is no longer exposed to the conditions that triggered them.

Business As Usual

In both cases, you should feel some resistance to your everyday schedule. However, in the case of allergies, you should be able to go about your daily activities. In contrast, colds tend to keep you in bed and weaken you over time.


If your symptoms are seasonal– for example, you usually sneeze and feel weakness in the month of March—there is a high possibility that you are dealing with an allergy and not a cold.

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