Do colds affect children differently than adults?

Colds produce most of the same symptoms in both children adults, however, children are much more likely to get colds than adults are. Adults often have a cold or two each year, and children may have eight or more colds a year.

Influenza affects children differently than adults. In children, the fever associated with influenza is likely to be higher, on average, than an adult's fever. In addition, children more often experience symptoms related to the digestive system, such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.

The only significant way that colds affect children differently than they affect adults is that very young children are more likely to develop a fever. Otherwise, children suffer from the same cold symptoms adults do—runny nose, congestion, sneezing, coughing and feeling tired. Children are also more likely to get sick than adults—kids catch an average of eight colds per year.

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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.