What is Summer Cold?

The common cold that spreads throughout the summer season is called summer cold. Such colds are mistaken for allergies. It should be noted that the common cold need not be spread only when the season is cold. The common cold is caused by Rhinovirus that spreads easily during summer. While winter cold doesn’t lead to fever, summer cold often leads to sudden fever. A runny nose, cough, headache, sore throat, etc., are some of the common symptoms of a summer cold. Recovery from a summer cold is possible without any medical treatment. Here we will discuss in detail the summer cold symptoms, preventive measures, and treatment.

About Summer Cold

A summer cold is nothing but a common cold that people catch during summers. The infection is often mistaken for seasonal allergies as well. It is widely misbelieved that you only catch a cold during winters. However, that’s not the case. Contrary to popular beliefs, it does not have to be cold outside for you to catch a cold. Moreover, the rhinovirus that causes the common cold is more contagious during summers and can quickly spread from an infected person to another.

Keep reading to know more about summer cold symptoms, treatment, and preventive measures.  

Summer Cold Symptoms

Most summer cold symptoms are similar to those of a common cold. These include:


  • Runny nose

  • Cough

  • Congestion

  • Headache

  • Sinuses

  • Sore throat

  • Low energy

  • Muscle aches

  • Sneezing

It is essential to note that winter cold does not lead to fever, especially in adults. However, summer colds can cause a sudden fever. You can recover from a summer cold in a few days without any medical treatment.

Summer Cold vs Allergies

Often it is difficult to differentiate between summer cold and allergies, especially because the symptoms start during the same season. However, there are a few distinctive factors as explained in the table below:


Summer Cold



Summer cold can cause sudden fever.

Allergies do not cause a fever.

Illness Duration

Summer cold can last for less than 10 days.

Allergies can typically last for weeks.

Symptom Patterns

Summer cold symptoms are usually consistent until recovery.

In the case of allergies, people may notice that their symptoms get better indoors or when using air filters.


Summer cold usually causes exhaustion and fatigue.

Allergies rarely cause any exhaustion or weakness.

Muscle Aches

Summer cold can cause muscle aches.

Allergies can cause headache or face pain but do not cause muscle aches.

Nasal Discharge

The nasal discharge is thick and greenish/yellowish.

The nasal discharge is translucent and usually thinner in consistency.

Risk Factors of Summer Cold

Summer cold commonly spreads from an infected individual to another when they come in contact with each other. For instance, if someone suffering from summer cold sneezes into their hand and then touches a doorknob, the virus can spread to people who touch the knob after.

If you are suffering from a summer cold and have a fever, then you are likely to be contagious. Some people are contagious for several days. However, some risk factors for catching a summer cold are as follows:


  • Spending time in enclosed public places or contact with someone suffering from the infection.

  • Not following good personal hygiene practices

  • Having a weak immune system due to stress, lack of sleep, or other chronic illnesses

  • Babies and older citizens are more likely to get infected quickly from a summer cold

Treatment and Home Remedies for Summer Cold

Most classic home remedies for a cold can be used to cure a summer cold. These include:


  • Resting: Resting and getting plenty of sleep is an effective home remedy for a summer cold. So, avoid any intense physical activity that could challenge your immune system. Even if you are suffering from a cold in summer, the best home remedy is to stay indoors and rest as much as possible.

  • Stay Hydrated: Consume plenty of electrolyte-based fluids when suffering from summer diseases, even if it is a summer cold. Also, avoid drinking alcohol, coffee, or energy drinks. Try drinking warm/hot beverages such as tea and soup, as it soothes the symptoms of the cold.

  • Eat Healthy Food: Increase the intake of vitamins and minerals when suffering from a summer cold. Nutrients like vitamin C, iron, and zinc help boost immunity during the season.

  • Other Effective Home Remedies: Herbs can help boost the immune system, which helps your body fight the summer cold virus. You can consume echinacea, liquorice root, elderberry, and garlic to avoid the infection. Also, look for summer home remedies online to cure summer-related health threats.

  • Install Humidifiers and Take Steams: Humidifiers do not directly get rid of a cold. However, it helps relieve its symptoms, especially a runny nose in summer, congestion, sore throat in summer, and cough.

How Long Does Summer Cold Last?

On average, a summer cold lasts for at least 10 days. But the symptoms start to improve from the 7th day. In children, a summer cold can recover faster as compared to adults (lastly for just a week). The recovery from the infection depends on age, underlying health conditions, genetics, and various other factors.

If you take care of yourself and follow the preventive measures correctly, a cold can recover quickly. However, if a summer cold lasts for more than two weeks, it is best to consult a doctor immediately and get it diagnosed.

Prevention of Summer Cold

A summer cold is common during the season. While there is no definite way to prevent the infection, there are a few ways in which you can reduce your chance of acquiring a summer cold.


  • Boost your immunity: If you are likely to acquire infections during summer, it is best to start building your immunity beforehand. You can follow a nutritious diet, avoid stress, and take supplements that contain immune-boosting natural remedies.

  • Get enough sleep: The importance of an adequate sleep schedule is highly underrated. It helps rest the immune system each day and encourages it to function properly.

  • Maintain good hygiene: Ensure that you wash your hands for more than 20 seconds before eating, after using restrooms, and after visiting an infected person. In general, maintaining good hygiene will keep you from falling sick often.


Suffering from a summer cold does not pose any risk to your health. However, it does limit your summertime activities like swimming, going on mini-vacations, and other outdoor activities.

Most times, the infection is just a minor inconvenience. But if it lasts for more than two weeks, especially for people with weak immunity, newborns, and older individuals, it can cause serious complications. Ensure that you get in touch with a doctor immediately if that happens.

While serious health concerns can arise without any warning, the least you can do is cover yourself and your loved ones with a health insurance plan. The policy takes care of the treatment and hospitalisation expenses whenever needed.

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