Thanks to COVID-19 public wellness guidelines, the variety of flu instances in the nation and in Connecticut space down considerably in this present influenza season.

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But even with her mask-wearing, hand-washing, social-distance-keeping, you have the right to still catch a cold or get the flu.

“Like influenza and COVID-19, colds spread out through the waiting via droplets expelled as soon as a human being sneezes or coughs,” stated Dr. Virginia Bieluch, chef of the division of transmittable Diseases in ~ The Hospital of main Connecticut. “The number of colds and also flu has diminished thanks in big part come mask-wearing, society distancing and also hand hygiene, yet there room other methods that cold viruses can spread.”

Bieluch provided that part viruses that cause colds such as rhinoviruses and also respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) deserve to survive on surfaces, an especially hard surface such together door knobs, computer system keyboards and elevator buttons, much longer than the virus that causes COVID-19. This germs may even have the ability to survive a swipe through a disinfecting wipe, she said. “If you touch this contaminated surface and also then touch her mouth, sleep or eye friend can develop a cold.”

And a special keep in mind to caregivers the babies and also toddlers: part adenoviruses that reason colds have the right to be spread out through stool together as once you adjust a child’s diaper and also then touch your eye, nose or mouth, Bieluch said.

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Bravo to you for conscientiously wearing a mask when you are outside your home, Bieluch said, yet “you have to take care when removing your mask in instance there are virus droplets on the former of her mask. Nothing touch the former of her mask, but rather, eliminate your mask through the straps. To wash a cloth mask frequently.”

After you remove your mask, it is vital to sanitize her hands immediately, she said.

“This year, everyone is an extremely concerned around symptoms of a cold due to the fact that these exact same symptoms can additionally be seen through COVID-19,” Bieluch said. “Testing because that COVID-19 is an essential public wellness measure. While her symptoms may be minimal to runny nose, soft cough, sneezing, you deserve to spread COVID-19 to someone else who can become an ext seriously ill. The is important to understand whether you have COVID-19.”

So if you wake up up in the morning through a runny nose and also a scratchy throat, what must you do?

“If you build symptoms of a cold, very first of every quarantine you yourself from others and then shot to acquire COVID-19 testing and continue come quarantine yourself till you acquire a negative result,” she said. “If her symptoms progress and you have actually shortness that breath, more far-reaching cough, high fever or any more serious symptoms, contact your healthcare provider.”