We had some crazy weather last week. Some parts of our beautiful state got snowed on, all of us wrapped up in snuggie blankets, only to switch them out a few days later for tank tops and flip-flops. Egads. It made my head spin. And what often happens when the temperature swoops up and dives down like that? Seasonal colds, you betcha.
Just when we’re out of the woods of flu season, cases of the common cold become more likely.
The influenza virus, which causes flu season to occur in the winter, has a structure that allows it to replicate and spread best when air is cold and dry.
The viruses that typically cause the common cold replicate more easily in cool, but not too cold weather. They cause outbreaks more frequently in the early to late spring and early to late fall.
Need more drama? In the spring, seasonal sniffing can also come from another culprit: allergies.
It’s not uncommon for people to lament, “I’ve been sick for weeks” when they really don’t have a cold at all, their allergies are flaring up.
Those who know they have allergies need to take particular care in the spring. Not only can pollen spark miserable seasonal symptoms, but also allergies leave you more likely to catch a cold virus because your immune system is already under attack, and taxed with handling all the various pollens.
I have friends who swear by home remedies and all-natural supplements to prevent and combat colds. But unfortunately, echinacea, zinc, and vitamins E and C have not been shown to help prevent the common cold in clinical trials.
What can help? Washing your hands. The cold virus can live on human skin for at least two hours, so keep your hands clean and away from your face.
To dodge seasonal sickness, follow the same “healthy lifestyle” advice that keeps you healthy year-round: exercise, sleep, eat well, and keep stress in check. Keep plugging away at the stuff you already know works. Have a happy, sneeze-free Spring. 🙂
Complete article, with references, can be found on the Weather Channel.