Colds vs. Allergies

It can sometimes be difficult to tell the difference between the common cold and allergies. However, making that distinction is key to identifying the proper treatment for timely relief.

As we head into the cold, winter months, keep this chart handy to help you determine if you are dealing with the common cold or airborne allergies.

Common Cold

Airborne Allergies

Symptoms Last

Up to 2 weeks

As long as the allergens are present

Symptoms Include

Stuffy, runny nose; sore throat; cough

Stuffy, runny nose; itchy, watery eyes

Treated With

Rest, fluids, over-the-counter medicines to ease symptoms

Antihistamines, decongestants, nasal steroids

Source: National Institutes of Health

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