The term “common cold” is a bit of a misnomer
AlenD/Shutterstock Common implies that there’s a single ordinary pathogen to blame for your runny nose, coughing, and mild fatigue. Actually, there’s a huge array of viruses—more than 200 of them—that induce colds, each with its own means of evading your body’s defenses. For this reason alone, it’s unlikely that a catchall “cure for the common cold” will ever be found. These are crazy cold symptoms you probably never knew about.
The chilly part is complicated
stockfour/Shutterstock As for the “cold” part, well, it’s complicated. Scientists don’t know for sure whether low temperatures affect a virus’s pathogenicity, but they do believe that colds are more prevalent in winter in part because we tend to spend more time indoors, in close quarters with infected people and surfaces.