Many summer colds are caused by enteroviruses, which bring flu-like symptoms, such as fever, aching joints and fatigue. They can also cause diarrhoea and an upset stomach.
Steer clear of germs
Good hand-washing is important in preventing summer colds, so regular, thorough scrubbing will reduce the chances of getting ill. Prolonged exposure to air conditioning dries out the mucous membranes in the respiratory tract, allowing the virus to enter the system more easily.
Check it’s not hay fever
Summer colds can often be mistaken for hay fever. One of the biggest differences is mucus colour. If it’s slightly grey or yellowish it’s likely to be a cold, whereas clear fluid tends to be an allergy. Tickly and itchy eyes and throat are a sign of seasonal allergies, whereas a sore throat is more likely to be a summer bug.
Take a painkiller
Treat a summer cold like its winter counterpart, by managing the symptoms. Painkillers such as Combogesic, which combines paracetamol and ibuprofen in one tablet, will lower your temperature and help reduce aches and pains.
Drink plenty of fluids
Being feverish and sweaty in the summer heat is not only uncomfortable, but it also means that you dehydrate more quickly and end up feeling worse. Make sure you drink plenty of fluids, but avoid fizzy drinks, caffeine and alcohol which can dry out the body.