What is a cold?

A cold is an acute viral infection of the upper respiratory tract and it affects the lining of the nose, throat, sinuses, and the large airways that connect to the lungs. If your child has a cold their nose and throat get inflamed and they may experience a runny or blocked nose, sneezing, coughing and generally feel miserable.

These symptoms are likely to appear within 10–16 hours of being exposed, and typically reach their worst within 36–72 hours. Symptoms of a cold usually last for about one-week.

When someone sneezes or coughs they spread cold viruses through droplets in the air. You can also pick up a cold by touching infected surfaces and then transmitting the virus from the hands to the mouth, nose or eyes.

What can I do when my child has a cold?

There’s no cure for a cold and antibiotics won’t help. You can make your child feel better by treating their symptoms, and letting them rest while their body fights off the virus.

That’s why it’s really important for kids to stay at home and rest. They should be encouraged to drink plenty of fluids. You can help relieve a runny or blocked nose and sneezing by using an over the counter decongestant and antihistamine medicine such as Children’s Paedamin Decongestant and Antihistamine or Children’s FESS to help relieve blocked noses.


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