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SHAPE: Why Summer Colds Are So Awful - and How to Feel Better ASAP

Here's how to avoid them, plus how to deal with not-so-pleasant symptoms if you do catch one

By Julia Malacoff

Getting a cold any time of year is a bummer. But summer colds? Those are basically the worst.

First, there's the obvious fact that it seems counterintuitive to get a cold in the summer, points out Navya Mysore, M.D., a family physician and office medical director at One Medical Tribeca. "You're having chills and wearing layers. Meanwhile, outside everyone is in shorts and enjoying the heat. It can feel isolating and can be hard psychologically to be indoors for long periods of time when it seems like everyone is out having fun and taking in the most summer has to offer!"

Because everyone agrees they're the worst, we decided to ask docs why people get colds in the summer in the first place, how to avoid getting them, and what to do when you have one. Here's what they had to say.

Already have a summer cold? Here's how to feel better ASAP.

Drink plenty of fluids. "Since summer colds tend to come with more generalized symptoms such as fatigue, nausea, and vomiting, it can be more easy to get a little dehydrated in the heat of summer," Dr. Darria Long Gillespie points out. "So when a summer cold hits, the first step is to hydrate." It's also a good idea to avoid beverages that dehydrate, like alcohol, coffee, and energy drinks, adds Dr. Mysore.

Prioritize air quality in your bedroom. For starters, you might want to avoid overdoing it with the air conditioning. "Air conditioners can make air extra dry and enhance symptoms," says Christopher Harrison, M.D., an infectious diseases physician at Children's Mercy Kansas City. "Maintain around 40 to 45 percent humidity in the home, where you sleep particularly," he adds. And if you use a humidifier, use room temperature water and clean it regularly. Otherwise, mold can get in the air, which can make cold symptoms worse.


Read the full article via SHAPE.

Learn more about the Division of Infectious Diseases at Children's Mercy.