Common illnesses that keep us hitting throughout the year, and ways to get rid of them

Throughout the year, we keep suffering from a variety of common illnesses. This article focuses on some of the common illnesses that make us sick, their causes, symptoms and treatment options.


Allergies are an immune response which is triggered by allergens, such as pollens, germs, dust and dirt, mold, and other harmful substances. Symptoms of allergies include

  • Eye irritation
  • Runny nose
  • Sneezing, and
  • Inflamed throat
  • Prevention of allergies

Avoiding outdoor activities from 5 am to 10 am, keeping windows closed, and using air conditioners instead of fans will help. A variety of treatment options are available for allergies that include decongestants, anti-inflammatory agents or corticosteroid, allergy shots, and antihistamines.

Cold and flu

Both cold and flu are illnesses of the upper respiratory infections that affect your nose, throat, and lungs. Cold and flu are commonly caused by viruses that may be transmitted by hand-to-hand contact. Common symptoms of cold and flu include:

  • High fever (above 100o F)
  • Nasal congestion
  • Sneezing
  • Headache
  • Sore throat

As cold and flu are caused by viruses, they cannot be cured by antibiotics. For fever and pain, acetaminophen, ibuprofen and aspirin may be prescribed by the doctor. Decongestants, such as pseudoephedrine, may be prescribed by your doctor to provide you relief. To suppress cough, dextromethorphan may prescribed, especially if cough is interfering with your sleep or work. For sore throat, sprays can be used as an effective pain reliever.

Conjunctivitis (Pink Eye)

Conjunctivitis is an inflammation of the transparent membrane of the eye, known as conjunctiva that lines your eyelids. Conjunctivitis can occur due to infection by bacteria or viruses, chemical irritants, or smoke.       

Symptoms of conjunctivitis include:

  • Burning sensation in eyes
  • Redness, itching and tearing
  • Burning sensation
  • Crusting of the eyelids

Treatment of conjunctivitis: As the disease is highly contagious, early diagnosis is important. Conjunctivitis caused by bacterial infection can be treated with antibiotic drops, while viral conjunctivitis usually clears up on its own in a few days. Washing the hands frequently, using a cool wet washcloth to soak off crusting of the eyelids, and using warm cloth and compressing it will reduce discomfort. Also, avoid eye makeup and wearing contact lenses, and washing any clothing that may be contaminated, and using clean towels and pillows everyday will also help.


Everyone suffers occasional mild headache, but debilitating or abnormally frequent headaches may require medical attention. Three most common types of headaches include:

Tension headache: Normally caused by stress, it can also be caused by poor posture, depression, and even sexual activity.

Cluster headache: Specific point of your head is affected, often the eyes. Cluster headache is characterized by sharp, piercing pain.

Migraine: This intense headache may last up to several hours. It may be caused due to low serotonin levels. The person experiences pulsing and throbbing in the head, significantly reducing their capability to function normally. 

Symptoms of migraine include:

Pulsing or throbbing in the head

Begins with intense pain on one side of the head and spreads

Lasts for several hours

May be accompanied by nausea or vomiting

Symptoms of tension headache include constant and dull ache, and feeling of squeezing or pressure


Diarrhea is caused by bacterial infection, due to the consumption of contaminated food or water. It may also be caused due to viral infection, parasites, overuse of alcohol, and food intolerance.

Symptoms of diarrhea include:

  • Watery, loose stools
  • Frequent bowel movement
  • Cramping or pain in the abdomen
  • Bloody stool or fever

Diarrhea usually clears up of its own in a day or two. Avoiding dairy-products, caffeine and alcohol, and high sugar drinks would help. You can also use over-the-counter lactobacillus capsules or tablets that will help in maintaining a healthy intestine, and are found in yogurt.

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