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Colds and coughs
Colds and coughs

Colds and coughs

Experiencing symptoms such as a fever, runny nose, cough, and sore throat typically suggests the onset of a common cold, normally caused by one of over 100 viruses. While most adults may encounter 2-3 colds annually, a cold generally isn't serious, resolving within 7-10 days, or at most, two weeks. The public healthcare service suggests that mild coughs or common colds usually don't necessitate a doctor's intervention. However, distinguishing a cold from other respiratory issues isn't always straightforward.

consultation with a private GP can clarify whether your symptoms are indicative of a cold or another issue. This approach is crucial to potentially prevent progression into more serious conditions like a chest infection. The GP will conduct a thorough examination, offer advice to alleviate discomfort, and prescribe medications if necessary. Early intervention often leads to quicker recovery.


Colds and coughs are highly contagious, spreading through:

  • Direct contact, such as hugging or handshaking, with someone infected.
  • Inhalation of respiratory droplets from an infected person who coughs, sneezes, or talks.
  • Indirect contact with virus-laden objects or surfaces, where the virus can remain active for extended periods.


These viral respiratory illnesses can manifest differently in individuals, but common symptoms include:

  • Stuffy or Runny Nose: Inflamed nasal passages and increased mucus production are typical cold responses.
  • Sneezing: Often triggered by irritation in the nasal passages.
  • Cough: A reaction to irritation in the airways, which can be either dry or mucus-producing.
  • Sore Throat: Usually an early symptom, presenting as soreness or scratchiness.
  • Headache: Can accompany a cold, especially with sinus congestion.
  • Fatigue: General tiredness and weakness are common.
  • Mild Chills: While not as intense as with some illnesses, mild shivers or chills may occur.
  • Watery Eyes: Resulting from irritants associated with a cold.
  • Mild Fever: Though not a regular symptom, a cold can induce a low-grade fever. A high fever might suggest a different illness.
  • Body Aches: These tend to be milder compared to flu-related aches.

Persistent symptoms, worsening conditions, breathing difficulties, severe headaches, or high fever necessitate professional medical advice and treatment.

Contact Medical Express Clinic for Personalised Advice

If you have concerns or require bespoke guidance, contact or visit Medical Express Clinic today. Our team of experienced healthcare professionals will provide you with the necessary advice and support for your specific health concerns.