Revealed: The science behind the common cold

As the season of sniffles approaches, GP Dr Roger Henderson has revealed the sticky ins-and-outs of sneezing, wheezing and other symptoms of the common cold.

Sneezing is your body’s way of removing irritants from your nose or throat and is a powerful, involuntary expulsion of air, which typically leaves the body at speeds topping 100mph, and contains as many as 40,000 droplets.

Bacterial and viral infections which cause a cold are commonly spread with sneezing – the force of a sneeze can send around 100,000 germs up to 25ft from the nasal passage.

But Dr Henderson, who is working with decongestant oil brand Olbas, also revealed you can stop a sneeze in its tracks – by deep breathing, holding your breath while counting to ten, or gently pinching the bridge of the nose for several seconds.

And contrary to popular belief, it is in fact possible to sneeze with your eyes open.

To find out more, watch this animated video below:


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