Almost every German has a cold twice a year. Nevertheless, many Germans do not know how to properly deal with the number one infectious disease. The handshake of a coy person can be contagious. The cause is quickly explained: common cold viruses can survive for several hours on surfaces such as hands, doorknobs or handkerchiefs.
Tip: If you have a runny nose, avoid shaking hands and discard tissue immediately after use and do not leave it lying around.
Sneeze has to be!
According to surveys, nearly 40 percent of the women interviewed prefer to hold their nose instead of risking a sneeze. This may be elegant, but it is not highly recommended from a medical point of view. On the contrary: In suppressed sneezing, pressure builds up in the nasal cavities, pushing the pathogens into the sinuses or even towards the middle ear. There it can then come to inflammation. If you have to sneeze, you should do so, but turn away from your counterpart and keep a handkerchief under your nose.
Influenza distributor: droplet infection
An important way for the common cold viruses to change their "owner" is the droplet infection. Here are charged with viruses mucus droplets of the diseased person - for example when sneezing or coughing - expelled and inhaled by the environment.
Since the droplets can overcome up to 12 meters away, are crowds, z. As in buses, department stores or schools, predestined for a droplet infection. Just a few minutes are enough in a crowded room to transfer the respiratory tract infection from one infected to many other people.
Blowjob is clever!
Schnäuzen and analyze the result, is regarded as frowned upon in 30 percent of all respondents. Nevertheless, doctors advise to look more closely at the nasal secretion in the handkerchief. That does not have to be in front of guests. Blow gently, without much pressure, always keeping a nostril closed. Good to know: Yellowish or greenish discolored mucus indicates a bacterial infection and recommends a doctor's visit.
Who is sick, it shivers!
Not the shivering leads to a cold, but vice versa. Even though we humans like to reduce the cold to the cold, it is correct: A person who has caught a cold starts to freeze. The reason for this: The sensation of hypothermia typically arises shortly before the development of fever, which precedes the other disease symptoms.
How long does a cold take?
Three days she comes, three days she stays, three days she goes - this old people's wisdom is still wrong. As a rule, a cold lasts a good week to ten days until it disappears. The duration of a flu infection can not be influenced - but the symptoms can be alleviated.
When should you go to the doctor!
Sore throat is usually caused by cold sores. If no other symptoms develop, the symptoms usually resolve within a few days. If you have a fever over 38.5 degrees Celsius, or if you see white, punctate deposits on the palate tonsils, you should see a doctor. Other warning signs: Painful cervical lymph nodes, very heavy dysphagia and hoarseness and difficulty swallowing, lasting more than a week.
Cold weather survived - is it safe then?
More than half of Germans believe that a surviving infection protects against recapture. Unfortunately this is not true: the infection with a common cold virus does not make you permanently immune. There are over 200 different viruses that are known as cold viruses. If the body has just successfully fought a virus, theoretically the next infection with another virus type can follow immediately.
The best protection against new infection is strengthening the immune system. Through a vitamin-rich diet, regular exercise and - if there is no illness - a weekly visit to the sauna.
Do I have a cold or a real flu?
The "real flu" or influenza is transmitted by the so-called influenza viruses. She begins suddenly with a high fever and a severe malady, usually with circulatory weakness. Many sufferers can indicate the exact beginning of the disease in hindsight!
In contrast to the common cold, there is a vaccine protection to protect against influenza. This is recommended to all risk groups by the STIKO and must be refreshed annually. The influenza virus has the ability to form new variants. The vaccine must therefore be adapted each year to the pathogen strains of the upcoming "flu season".
The main target group for influenza vaccination, which is carried out in early autumn, are people who are older than 60 years, a chronic disease such as heart failure, lung disease, kidney disease, metabolic disorders, diabetes mellitus or similar. or have a weakened immune system. But also people with frequent contact to sufferers such. For example, clinicians recommend vaccination.
Cold - some truths
- Cold alone does not make a cold.
- The mucous membranes of the respiratory tract are better supplied with blood in the cold. But cold can also lead to a weakening of the immune system.
- Colds are triggered by viruses.
- Antibiotics do not work against viruses.
- Coughing is an important protective reflex. The rule is: too much mucus does little harm, too tough mucus damages more.