What are Upper Respiratory Infections?

Upper Respiratory InfectionsUpper respiratory infection (URI) is the most common acute illness in the United States, the most common reason for absence from school or work, and the most common acute complaint seen in the ambulatory setting.. The term, upper respiratory infection, often refers to a head cold or the common cold. URI is any infection of the upper parts of the respiratory tract, including the nasal passages, nasal sinuses, and throat.

Knowing how to identify upper respiratory infection symptoms can help you to seek the proper treatment and stay healthier this winter.

Common upper respiratory infection symptoms include:

Nasal congestion

Runny nose

Sneezing

Sore throat

Painful swallowing

Cough

Fatigue

Fever (though this is most common in children)

The most common time for this illness to occur are the fall and winter months, from September until March. This may be explained because these are the usual school months when children and adolescents spend a lot of time in groups and inside closed doors. Furthermore, many viruses of upper respiratory infection thrive in the low humidity of the winter.