Cold vs. Allergy: How Do I Know the Difference?

About colds and allergies

Stuffy or runny nose

Allergy: Often
Cold: Often

Sneezing

Allergy: Often
Cold: Often

Itchy eyes

Allergy: Often
Cold: Rarely, never

Fever

Allergy: Never
Cold: Often

Aches and pains

Allergy: Never
Cold: Sometimes

Headache

Allergy: Sometimes
Cold: Often

Cough

Allergy: Sometimes
Cold: Often

Dizziness

Allergy: Sometimes
Cold: Often

Hoarseness

Allergy: Sometimes
Cold: Often

Recur at a certain time of year

Allergy: Often
Cold: Rarely

Need for antibiotics

Allergy: No
Cold: No

Warning time

Allergy: Symptoms occur after exposure to allergen
Cold: Gets worse over several days

How long it lasts

Allergy: As long as your child is exposed to the allergen
Cold: Usually three to 14 days


Next Steps
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