College athletes verses the common cold

By Ashley Sierzega
October 14, 2015


The common cold originates from more than 200 known viruses. Being a busy college student, catching a cold disrupts the normal day-to-day routines.

When a student is a student-athlete on top of that, an even bigger challenge is presented.

Student-athletes lead busy schedules. They are constantly incorporating practices and games as well as time to do school work. It can be really hard to focus in class and on the field when all a student wants to do is crawl in to bed and sleep.

“It’s never fun going to class sick but if you’re able to preform at your best then you just have to suck it up,” Jen Grenauer, senior volleyball player, said.

“As long as I have something small like a cough then I will make the effort to go to practice,” Matt McDonald, sophomore swim team member, sai. “It all depends on how I am feeling that day.”

Medicine is a person’s best friend when they are feeling under the weather, athlete or not. McDonald likes to take Tylenol, NyQuil and DayQuil.

Susan Fitzgerald, director of health services nurse, recommends treating colds with antihistamines to help a runny nose, decongestants to relieve sinus pain and congestion, cough drops and over the counter pain relievers such as Advil and Tylenol to get rid of body aches and pains.

According to the Mayo Clinic, the common cold enters the body through the mouth, eyes or nose. It spreads in the air when a sick person coughs or sneezes and does not cover his or her mouth and by skin to skin contact with someone who is sick or touching an object with cold germs on it.

In order to prevent colds, Fitzgerald recommends students wash their hands often or use anti-bacterial wipes and gels.

When sick, it is also important to drink plenty of fluids and get lots of sleep. “I sleep more and drink plenty of water. I also have plenty of orange juice in my room,” Kevin Blake, sophomore cross-country team member, said.

Other popular home remedies include drinking soup, staying in a warm and humid room and gargling salt water. Vitamin C, echinacea and zinc are also great at shortening colds.

Colds are more frequent in the fall and winter times because people are constantly indoors and around others.

If a cold goes untreated a person can develop an ear infection, sinusitis and other infections like bronchitis and pneumonia.

Health services is available Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Founder’s Hall.


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Ashley Sierzega

Junior Digital Communications and Social Media major,Lifestyles Anchor for LOQation video news, and pop culture junkie. WYBF staff member.

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