Am I More Likely To Get A Cold Or The Flu If I Have Kids?

Question: Am I more likely to get a cold or the flu if I have kids?

Answer: You're actually more likely to get both if you have children. Colds are caused by many different viruses which can circulate especially in daycares and in school systems. While the flu is due to only one virus, influenza virus, it also more frequently circulates in daycares and school systems. Indeed, there's been a study in Japan where, at one point, Japan was immunizing all their children and it showed very nicely that when they did that, there was much less flu disease in the adult population, especially in the households.

So, it's pretty clear that you can introduce flu mainly through children into a family situation and that's the most common route.

Next: Is It True That Lingering In Wet Clothing Or Being Exposed To Cold Temperatures Increases My Chances Of Getting A Cold?

James Conway, M.D., Assoc. Professor of Pediatrics, Univ. of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health
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