When should I talk to my doctor about my cold?

Call your doctor about your cold when you feel you’re getting worse instead of better. Your symptoms should improve after a week or so. If you develop a fever (102 degrees Fahrenheit or higher), shortness of breath, chest pain, a cough that produces phlegm, severe sinus pain, extremely swollen glands, ear pain, vomiting or any other symptom that causes you concern, you should see your doctor.
A cold will usually go away on its own in about a week, but if your symptoms last for more than 10 days, you run a fever of 100.4°F or higher, or your symptoms are not relieved by over-the-counter medications, see your doctor. Complications of the common cold can include sinus infection, ear infection, strep throat, bronchitis, and even pneumonia. People with asthma, compromised immune systems, or other chronic conditions should be especially careful in monitoring their health and seeing a doctor if the cold appears to be severe.

Continue Learning about Cold and Flu

Cold and Flu

Cold and Flu

Colds and flu are both viral infections, but have different symptoms. With a cold you will have symptoms such as a runny nose or a sore throat. Flu symptoms come on suddenly and may include fever, body aches or vomiting. While the...

re is no cure for either, there are treatments -- chicken soup, nasal sprays, rest -- which can help your feel better.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.