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. Being the most common infectious disease in humans, the cold is mainly caused by coronaviruses or rhinoviruses. Read More click to expand contents

The cold can be caused by more than 200 different viruses. Up to 50% of colds are caused by rhinoviruses, other cold-causing viruses include: Human parainfluenza virus Metapneumovirus Coronavriuses adenovirus Human respiratory syncytial virus Enteroviruses. When a virus manages to overpower the body's immune system, infection occurs. The first line of defense is mucus, which is produced in the nose and throat by the mucus glands. This mucus traps anything inhaled, such as dust, viruses and bacteria. Mucus is a slippery fluid that the membranes of the nose, mouth, throat and vagina produce. When the mucus is penetrated by the virus, which then enters a cell, the virus takes control of the element of the cell which makes protein. It uses this element to manufacture more viruses, these viruses then attack surrounding cells.

A symptom is something the patient feels or reports, while a sign is something other people, including a doctor may detect. Pain could be an example of a symptom, while a rash could be a sign. The body reacting to the cold virus is mainly what brings about the symptoms that you feel. A release of chemicals is triggered, making the blood vessels leak, causing the mucous glands to work harder. If you're suffering with a cold, it is important to get lots of rest and drink plenty of fluids The most common symptoms of a cold are: Dry throat Sore throat Cough Mild fever Sneezing Hoarse voice Blocked nose Mild headache.

Muscle aches Shivering Pink eye Weakness Reduction in appetite Extreme exhaustion. Approximately 25% of people do not suffer any symptoms when infected with the cold virus; perhaps because their immune system reacts differently to the virus. Sometimes bacteria can infect the ears or sinuses - this is known as a secondary bacterial infection - and can be treated with antibiotics.