Many people tend to see cold as an ordinary illness, that may not be paid so much attention. On the contrary, it could be more severe. David Weitzman, MD and urgent care physician in the North Carolina and a board member of the American Academy of Urgent Care Medicine, notes that most of the serious illnesses originally start out as colds. There is a line between cold and a condition that is not just cold, but requires the medical attention.
Here are some signs that indicate you should get your cold checked by a physician.
1. It’s more than 3 weeks already
Cold should normally last no longer than 21 days. If prolonged, it could be a sign of other illnesses that have to do with the lungs, like asthma and pneumonia. If within three weeks there has been no improvement, it’s not like the ordinary cold you thought it was.
2. Your eyes are itchy or watery
If your eyes are consistently tearing up, with no obvious trigger, it could be a sign of an allergy. Your eyes tend to be itchy, red and watery, you may notice other signs of allergy like swelling of the tongue, stomach cramps and feeling lightheaded.
3. Your symptoms are back and worse than before
You are feeling better just when you think it is over with the cold, it rebounds and becomes even worse than it was earlier. If you notice this, then you must visit your doctor as soon as possible. It is likely to be a secondary infection like bronchitis, inflammation of the lining of the bronchial tubes or pneumonia (the lung infection).
4. High fever
While moderate fever helps the immune system to kill the bacteria and virus, a fever higher than 102 in adults is a severe illness, rather than just cold. Immediately see your doctor, if you notice you have a very high fever.
5. Severe headaches
If you have regular severe headache without any stress and illness, you should get yourself checked by a doctor. Intense headache is most likely to indicate a disorder affecting the central nervous system and most often linked to meningitis, inflammation of the meninges.
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