Health Education

Is It a Cold or Allergies? When to Come to the Clinic

Is It a Cold or Allergies? When to Come to the Clinic

Is it a seasonal cold or something more serious? It can be difficult to decide when it’s necessary to take your child to the doctor, especially for first-time parents.

During springtime specifically, it can be tricky to determine whether your child is suffering from cold or allergy symptoms, and if their symptoms require medical attention. Here’s a quick guide to help you make the call.

Signs of the Common Cold

If your child shows any of the following signs, you’ll most likely need to treat cold symptoms:

  • Congestion, sneezing or coughing
  • Aches, pains or a sore throat—if your toddler is too young to tell you about these symptoms, they may simply act irritable
  • A fever
  • Contact with family or kids at school that have had a cold

Rest and lots of liquids are two important factors in recovering from a common cold. If your child is older than two, you can also try giving them honey, which is a great natural cough remedy. It’s also a good idea to practice preventative measures, like eating healthy foods, year-round to fend off illness.

If your child’s cold symptoms persist for more than two weeks and are worsening, it’s a good idea to make an appointment with their pediatrician.

The Common Signs of Allergies

Alternatively, you may need to treatallergy symptoms if your child has:

  • Congestion, sneezing or coughing
  • Eyes that are itchy, red or watery
  • Clear—not green—mucus
  • An absence of fever or aches
  • Family history of seasonal allergies

Common allergy treatments include antihistamine medications, steroid nose sprays to reduce inflammation, and simply avoiding the outdoors when pollen counts are high. If your child has itchy, red eyes, a cold compress may also help to reduce itching or swelling.

Whether your child has cold or allergy symptoms, it’s always a good idea to bring them in if treating them at home isn’t enough.

If you’d like advice about your child’s specific symptoms, feel free to call us at 503-981-5348. Our team is happy to offer guidance to you and your family.