How do I know if the symptoms I'm experiencing are seasonal allergies or an extended common cold with cough?
Asked Mar 12, 2014


Colds and allergies can often cause unpleasant symptoms that negatively affect your life. Unfortunately, it's often hard to tell the difference between a cold and an allergy, as they share many similar symptoms. Here are some differences which may help you sort out which is affecting you.

A cold usually lasts from 3 to 14 days and occurs mostly in the winter. You may experience symptoms such as cough, body aches, fatigue, sore throat, watery eyes, and a runny or stuffy nose. Your mucus may appear thick, green, or yellow — a sign your body is fighting an active infection. During a cold, many people also have a mild fever that comes and goes over time.

Allergies can last for months, as long as you are exposed to the allergen. Allergies can occur at any time of the year and affect different people at different times. Allergy symptoms may include a sore throat, itchy and watery eyes, and cough. Your mucus will normally appear clear. Unlike a cold, allergies often can be effectively addressed by changing settings or removing allergens.

To learn more about allergies in general visit:

A few easy steps can help reduce risk of getting the cold, especially in children:

Answered by:
answered Mar 24, 2014
I'm a pharmacist in the Dallas area working for a great grocery/pharmacy chain. I'm passionate about community and patient care and hope to own a pharmacy...
Reviewed by:
reviewed Mar 24, 2014
Ask a Pharmacist Now
Connect with a real Digital Pharmacist to answer your questions
0/120 characters