Flu

What is a cold?

Colds are viral infections of the nose and throat. Colds can go on to involve the sinuses, ears, larynx (vocal cords), trachea and bronchi directly or through secondary effects.

The presence of the virus causes inflammation of membrane linings in the nose, so that there is swelling with obstruction (stuffiness) and increased mucous secretions.

Colds are the most common type of respiratory infection. They’re usually mild illnesses that naturally come to an end, only occasionally leading to further problems.

Reviewed by Cape Town-based general practitioner, Dr Dalia Hack. March 2019.

Read more:

- Symptoms of the common cold

- Risk factors for a cold

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24