It’s that time of year when almost everyone you know is suffering from a cold, the flu, or a stomach virus. While some will be lucky enough to escape the season with nothing more than perhaps a few sniffles, many will develop more serious winter illnesses such as bronchitis and pneumonia. Bronchitis and pneumonia share a number of common traits and symptoms, but pneumonia can lead to serious complications—particularly for the elderly and those with weak immune systems.
Anyone who has ever caught a gastrointestinal (GI) virus knows just how uncomfortable an experience it can be. It is an infection characterized by nausea, vomiting and diarrhea (greater than 3 episodes/day) usually associated with a general sense of digestive unease and discomfort. Acute gastroenteritis can develop quickly and last anywhere from overnight to up to 10 days in more severe cases.
Between environmental factors, cleaning agents and the cold, dry air, our skin can take quite a bit of damage this time of year. While dry skin and cracked hands are to be expected when the weather turns chilly, a rash can be a sign of something more serious. Persistent rashes that won’t go away may require a closer look, especially if home treatment hasn’t been effective.
It’s the time of year when many of us end up developing sore, scratchy throats that can come seemingly out of nowhere. While the majority of sore throats can be attributed to factors such as seasonal change, airborne irritants and the common cold, there’s another culprit that can cause extremely painful sore throat as its main symptom—strep throat.
When it comes to fall illnesses, conjunctivitis—commonly referred to as “pink eye”—is among the most feared by parents. School-aged children are at a high level of risk of exposure to conjunctivitis, and though severe complications are rare, viral pink eye is incredibly contagious and can cause quite a bit of discomfort if left untreated.