Updated: 8:29 PM UTC, Jul 16, 2017

Colds and Drafts

The common cold, contrary to popular belief, is not caused by exposure to drafts or cold air but solely by contamination (coughs, sneezes, contact with saliva or nasal secretions).

If the cold ailment  is more prevalent in winter, it is because nasal mucous are more fragile due to the dry air as cold air inhibits certain immune defenses. One must also take into account the typical behavior patterns of the festive season (close contact to a greater number of individuals).

A man mid-sneeze. Original CDC caption: "This 2009 photograph captured a sneeze in progress, revealing the plume of salivary droplets as they are expelled in a large cone-shaped array from this man’s open mouth, thereby dramatically illustrating the reason one needs to cover his/her mouth when coughing, or sneezing, in order to protect others from germ exposure." A man mid-sneeze. Original CDC caption: "This 2009 photograph captured a sneeze in progress, revealing the plume of salivary droplets as they are expelled in a large cone-shaped array from this man’s open mouth, thereby dramatically illustrating the reason one needs to cover his/her mouth when coughing, or sneezing, in order to protect others from germ exposure."

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