common cold


Definition of common cold

: an acute disease of the upper respiratory tract that is marked by inflammation of the mucous membranes of the nose, throat, eyes, and eustachian tubes and by a watery then purulent discharge and is caused by any of several viruses (such as a rhinovirus or an adenovirus)

Examples of common cold in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The most common triggers are pathogens (like the common cold and flu viruses), allergens (like pollen or cat dander), and irritants, which can be chemical (like perfume) or physical (like dust), Dr. Voigt says. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, "Quick Question: Why Do We Sneeze?," 8 Mar. 2019 View Sample Sign Up Now Research also suggests the common cold thrives in cooler temperatures. Markham Heid, Time, "Are You More Likely to Get Sick When The Seasons Change? Here's What Experts Say," 19 Mar. 2018 And research in mouse cells suggests that rhinovirus, the common cold virus, replicates faster at cold temperatures, Dr. Auewarakul added. Karen Weintraub, New York Times, "Can Being Cold Make You Sick?," 23 Feb. 2018 The medical team used polio viruses already weakened and altered for use in polio vaccines, and genetically engineered them to carry parts of a common cold virus, called a rhinovirus, known to be attracted to glioma cells. NBC News, "Modified polio vaccine helps fight deadly brain tumors," 26 June 2018 Illnesses like the flu, the common cold, and pertussis (whooping cough) are thought to mainly spread this way. Colleen Stinchcombe, SELF, "Here’s How Far Germs Spread Through Sneezing and Coughing," 13 Feb. 2019 Felipe was taken with his father to a hospital in Alamogordo, New Mexico, where he was diagnosed with a common cold, according to the timeline. Nomaan Merchant, The Seattle Times, "Medical checks ordered after 2nd child immigrant dies," 26 Dec. 2018 Hospital staff tested the boy for strep, diagnosed him with a common cold and gave him Tylenol, the timeline said. Dan Frosch, WSJ, "Homeland Security Steps Up Medical Services for Migrants After Two Children Die," 26 Dec. 2018 And Wade knew that if baby Luca caught any kind of virus — even a common cold — the illness could trigger dangerous seizures. Katherine Long, The Seattle Times, "A Kirkland mother’s anguished phone call brings help she never imagined," 9 Dec. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'common cold.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of common cold

1770, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for common cold

Last Updated

13 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for common cold

The first known use of common cold was in 1770

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More Definitions for common cold

common cold


Kids Definition of common cold

: a contagious illness which causes the lining of the nose and throat to be sore, swollen, and red and in which there is usually much mucus and coughing and sneezing

common cold


Medical Definition of common cold

: an acute contagious disease of the upper respiratory tract that is marked by inflammation of the mucous membranes of the nose, throat, eyes, and eustachian tubes with a watery then purulent discharge and is caused by any of several viruses (as a rhinovirus or an adenovirus)

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More from Merriam-Webster on common cold

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with common cold

Spanish Central: Translation of common cold

Nglish: Translation of common cold for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about common cold

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