Colds vs Seasonal Allergies

Colds:  AKA Viral Upper Respiratory Infection

Symptoms by age –
Infants: Fever, nasal discharge, fussiness, difficulty feeding, decreased appetite, difficulty sleeping

Children: Nasal congestion, nasal discharge, cough, sneezing, fever, headache, sore throat, hoarseness, irritability, difficulty sleeping, decreased appetite

How often do they occur?

Under age six – Average six to eight colds per year, mostly during September – April.  Duration of 14 days.  Kids in daycare usually have more episodes of colds.  However, when they enter primary school, kids who attended daycare are less vulnerable to colds that those who did not.

Six and older – Average two to four colds per year, duration to seven days. 

Seasonal Allergies:

Common Environmental Allergens: Pollen, dust mites, Mold, cockroach, cats and dogs

Age two years and older

Symptoms: Sneezing, runny nose, nasal obstruction, nasal itching, postnasal drip, cough, irritability, fatigue, itch/watery eyes

Young children may repeatedly snort, sniff, cough, or clear their throat

Under two years:  Seasonal allergies are uncommon in children less than two years of age because the development of these symptoms occurs after about two years of allergen exposure, also known as allergic sensitization.