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The Coughing Common Cold

This+photo+posted+on+cdc.gov+shows+the+duration+of+each+of+the+most+common+symptoms+of+the+common+cold.+Nasal+discharge+and+a+constant+cough+last+the+most.+%22I+used+to+get+a+stuffy+nose+and+a+super+fat+headache+%5Band+my+colds%5D+last+for+like+a+week%2C%22+junior+Nate+Stelter+said.
This photo posted on cdc.gov shows the duration of each of the most common symptoms of the common cold. Nasal discharge and a constant cough last the most.

This photo posted on cdc.gov shows the duration of each of the most common symptoms of the common cold. Nasal discharge and a constant cough last the most. "I used to get a stuffy nose and a super fat headache [and my colds] last for like a week," junior Nate Stelter said.

This photo posted on cdc.gov shows the duration of each of the most common symptoms of the common cold. Nasal discharge and a constant cough last the most. "I used to get a stuffy nose and a super fat headache [and my colds] last for like a week," junior Nate Stelter said.

Jordan Campbell, Staff Writter

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With the winter months in full swing, the common cold spreads germs throughout the school.

“I wash my hands a lot when I touch things that aren’t clean [at school] and I try to eat healthier during cold season,” sophomore Morgan Miller said.

According to commoncold.org, a common cold can be defined as a viral infection located in the nose which also involves the bronchial tubes, sinuses, and ears. The infection comes from contact with contaminated fingers and/or germs that originated from a sneeze or cough. Junior Nate Stelter discussed his opinion of school being full of germs just like any school which he believes causes illnesses.

“I’ve seen people stick gum in a plethora of places where it shouldn’t go,” Stelter said. “People just throw their trash wherever.”

Many symptoms of the common cold include:

  • A Sore Throat
  • Coughing
  • Sneezing
  • Runny Nose
  • Fever
  • Headaches

School Nurse Rita Green discusses the fact that people come to her complaining of cold symptoms that include congestion.

“They do [come and ask] if I have anything for congestion,” Green said. “[But] kids have to bring their own over the counter medication for that.”

Cold season can start as early as September and last until April. Green explained in simple words on how to treat and cope with the common cold in the meantime.

“Drink lots of water and get lots of sleep,” Green said.

Commoncold.org recommends that treatment of a common cold begins at the earliest sign of the illness. With early treatment, the antibiotics can digest and fight the peak of the cold which happens within the first three days. Miller explained that her colds weren’t treated early and had an affect on her daily life.

“I get a cold around 2 to 3 times a year and it pretty much affects everything I do because I can’t think or breathe properly,” Miller said.

The cold tends to last 3-7 days in minor cases. An adult averages 2-3 colds per year and a child averages 6-10 because they are more capable of catching the virus, especially in a school environment.

“I [try] to just take care of myself [and] stay away from all the people coughing and all that nasty stuff,” Stelter said. “When I cough, I cough into my shirt, jacket, or hoodie.”

Green believes that students should come to school with a cold, unless they have a fever. On the other hand, Miller believes that even if people cover their coughs and sneezes, students should still stay home because a cold still counts as being sick.

“I feel like if you come to school with a cold you’re not going to be able to function as well as you could if you were healthy,” Miller said.

During the first three days of the viral infection is when a person is the most contagious. The virus can spread with a touch to the nose or mouth followed by touching an object at school, such as a desk or doorknob. Although, kids do come to school with colds and Miller claims that when she has one at school, she can’t put forth full effort.

“My least favorite part about having a cold is just feeling gross and I can’t do my best at anything I do,” Miller said.

When diagnosed with a cold, Green, in the end, explained that it is crucial that students stay as clean as possible.

“Wash your hands. That’s how you prevent everything,” Green said.

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The Coughing Common Cold