With the warm summer sun beating down, the last thing on your mind is probably the thought of catching a cold. But contrary to popular belief, you can catch a cold in the summer too, not just during the winter months. Millions of cases of the common cold are diagnosed in the U.S. each year, with adults having, on average, two to three colds each year. So what exactly is the difference between a summer cold and a winter cold?
The common cold can be caused by over 200 different viruses -- and summer colds are generally caused by different viruses than winter colds. During the cold winter months, rhinoviruses are one of the more common causes of colds. But in the warmer months, like between June and October, non-polio enteroviruses are more common.
Non-polio enteroviruses are actually one of the most common type of virus, following rhinovirus. There are over 60 types of non-polio enteroviruses and statistics show that this type of virus causes about 10 to 15 million illnesses each year in the United States.
So now that we know summer colds are generally caused by enteroviruses, which symptoms can be expected? Summer colds and winter colds have similar symptoms: mild respiratory symptoms, a sore throat, head and muscle aches, nausea and vomiting, and a sudden fever between 101 and 104 degrees F can all be anticipated with summer colds.
Fortunately, summer colds are just as treatable as winter colds are. If you experience a summer cold, you should be sure to get plenty of rest, keep hydrated by drinking a lot of fluids, and you can even take some immune-boosting vitamins and minerals to help your body fight off the virus.
While the sunny weather may have you feeling invincible, it's important to remember that you can catch a cold anytime, anywhere. So make sure you're keeping your body healthy and always visit an urgent care center if your cold worsens or doesn't show any signs of getting better.