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Topic: Chronic colds since moving to UK? Just me?  (Read 1060 times)

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Chronic colds since moving to UK? Just me?
« on: June 23, 2019, 05:28:47 PM »
Hiya,

I’ve been here in the UK since May 2018 and I have had six respiratory infections since September. So six infections in nine months. Aargh!  I’ve never had allergies and in the US, I’d get one maybe two colds in a year, tops, and always in winter when everyone else was sick.

Has this happened to anyone else in the first year here? Are there cold viruses that are unique to the UK? I’m going to the doctor next week but just wondered if it’s an ex pat thing.

Thanks!



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Re: Chronic colds since moving to UK? Just me?
« Reply #1 on: June 23, 2019, 05:49:04 PM »
I never had allergies in the States like I have them here!  There is something that blooms in May and June that just does a number on me - I feel like I've run a marathon. It has gone away after it hits July or August, so far. I've always been allergic to mold, so perhaps it's the damp. I spent the 40 years before moving over here in one desert or another, so things that grow in prolonged damp are not something my immune system was ready for. I had it bad in 2017, not as bad last year, and "hit by a truck" this year. ::)

I have also had two really nasty, vicious colds since arriving in SP '17. I don't think I had a proper cold in the States for a good five years before moving over.  There are going to be some "bugs" here that your immune system may not have encountered before. Consider it like putting a kid in daycare for the first time, only not as bad.  ;) ;D


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Re: Chronic colds since moving to UK? Just me?
« Reply #2 on: June 23, 2019, 08:20:19 PM »
You are rebuilding a new immune system.

And let’s be honest, overall hygiene is not as good here.


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Re: Chronic colds since moving to UK? Just me?
« Reply #3 on: June 23, 2019, 09:40:50 PM »
Depending on where you are, check your flat for mold (aka damp) because that is a prime cause of repeated respiratory infections. Colds spread like wildfire here, I'm much more aware of washing my hands the second I get home and before eating snacks with my hands etc and make sure my husband does too. But pollution is higher in many places, there's different pollen (that I'm also super allergic to and wasn't in the US) and there's a lot more noise interrupting good sleep + knowing that stress can affect your immune system. Hopefully it gets better for you soon!

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Re: Chronic colds since moving to UK? Just me?
« Reply #4 on: June 24, 2019, 07:17:50 PM »
I was constantly sick for at least two years when I first moved here. I agree with the above poster about checking for mould though!


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Re: Chronic colds since moving to UK? Just me?
« Reply #5 on: June 24, 2019, 07:23:57 PM »
I had a cold for like 2 months when living in a basement apartment in England! Mold is nasty and can make you feel dreadful. Maybe invest in a dehumidifier and check for mold


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Re: Chronic colds since moving to UK? Just me?
« Reply #6 on: June 25, 2019, 01:24:40 PM »
Thanks everybody. Our house doesn't seem to have evidence of mold and husband is not sick but who knows. I'll check. Maybe he's used to it.

Nan D., I do feel like a new nursery teacher. Ha.

Explorer--two years?! Cripes.

The doctor today was no help. My throat has been killing me for a week and people are commenting on how they can see how swollen my neck is. The fact that I have also had a low-grade fever and joint pain along with the killer sore throat was not worth a strep test or any other inquiry. However, if I still feel sick next week, she advised that I should come back. She also had no insight into the chronic infections. Said perhaps it's asthma. Um...I don't have asthma.

I know you guys have been great with the immigration and other advice but you have now all been more helpful than that GP as well. I'll just chalk it up to something in the UK/London that I have never been exposed to is making me ill.  :\\\'(




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Re: Chronic colds since moving to UK? Just me?
« Reply #7 on: June 25, 2019, 01:31:34 PM »

The doctor today was no help. My throat has been killing me for a week and people are commenting on how they can see how swollen my neck is. The fact that I have also had a low-grade fever and joint pain along with the killer sore throat was not worth a strep test or any other inquiry.

Ouch, sounds horrid. Hope you get well soon, Sundance. I would book another appointment now, they can be hard to get and you can always cancel it if you find you're on the mend.
March 28th 2013-Moved to UK, husband on spouse visa.Oct 20th 2015-Applied by mail for FLR(M).Feb 1st 2016 FLR(M).March 7th 2018 ILR. YAY! March 21st NCS&JCAP appointment.


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Re: Chronic colds since moving to UK? Just me?
« Reply #8 on: June 25, 2019, 01:35:59 PM »
Thanks everybody. Our house doesn't seem to have evidence of mold and husband is not sick but who knows. I'll check. Maybe he's used to it.

Nan D., I do feel like a new nursery teacher. Ha.

Explorer--two years?! Cripes.

The doctor today was no help. My throat has been killing me for a week and people are commenting on how they can see how swollen my neck is. The fact that I have also had a low-grade fever and joint pain along with the killer sore throat was not worth a strep test or any other inquiry. However, if I still feel sick next week, she advised that I should come back. She also had no insight into the chronic infections. Said perhaps it's asthma. Um...I don't have asthma.

I know you guys have been great with the immigration and other advice but you have now all been more helpful than that GP as well. I'll just chalk it up to something in the UK/London that I have never been exposed to is making me ill.  :\\\'(




Ugh, the famous "if not better in x days come back".  It's the second line of the "It's just a virus" moto of the NHS.  It's even better when you have kids.  I have literally taken my baby to the quacks for a high fever, told to go back if still there in 3 days, gone back.  Told to go back in 3 days, gone back, etc.  All the way up to 10 days.  <sigh>

But the NHS is good in a life/death circumstance.  It's the day-to-day that leaves a bit to be desired....


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Re: Chronic colds since moving to UK? Just me?
« Reply #9 on: June 25, 2019, 04:55:28 PM »
Oddly, I have had the complete opposite experience.  Back in the US, before moving to the UK, I would have a terrible chest cold pretty much every year.  When I first moved here, I was dreading my first one around my husband, because he's rather protective of me, and I was afraid I'd freak him out... it's been over 6 years, and I still haven't had more than sniffles.  It's going to happen, but so far I've been fine.  (We have mould.)
9/1/2013 - "fiancée" (marriage) visa issued
4/6/2013 - married (certificate issued same-day)
5/6/2013 - FLR(M)#1 in person -- approved!
8/1/2016 - FLR(M)#2 by post -- approved!
8/5/2018 - ILR in person -- approved!
22/11/2018 - Citizenship (online, with NDRS+JCAP) -- approved!
14/12/2018 - I became a British citizen.  :)


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Re: Chronic colds since moving to UK? Just me?
« Reply #10 on: June 25, 2019, 05:28:39 PM »
Oddly, I have had the complete opposite experience.  Back in the US, before moving to the UK, I would have a terrible chest cold pretty much every year.  When I first moved here, I was dreading my first one around my husband, because he's rather protective of me, and I was afraid I'd freak him out... it's been over 6 years, and I still haven't had more than sniffles.  It's going to happen, but so far I've been fine.  (We have mould.)

Maybe your body needed the mold?  :D


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Re: Chronic colds since moving to UK? Just me?
« Reply #11 on: June 25, 2019, 05:44:12 PM »
Oddly, I have had the complete opposite experience.  Back in the US, before moving to the UK, I would have a terrible chest cold pretty much every year.  When I first moved here, I was dreading my first one around my husband, because he's rather protective of me, and I was afraid I'd freak him out... it's been over 6 years, and I still haven't had more than sniffles.  It's going to happen, but so far I've been fine.  (We have mould.)

Perhaps because you have fresh air and lots of space and hardly any people around you?  :)
March 28th 2013-Moved to UK, husband on spouse visa.Oct 20th 2015-Applied by mail for FLR(M).Feb 1st 2016 FLR(M).March 7th 2018 ILR. YAY! March 21st NCS&JCAP appointment.


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Re: Chronic colds since moving to UK? Just me?
« Reply #12 on: June 25, 2019, 06:08:23 PM »
Perhaps because you have fresh air and lots of space and hardly any people around you?  :)
This is what I was thinking!

For the OP, I have asthma and there is so much pollution in London that I can't be in the city period without a mask and rescue inhaler. You may want to consider a good quality HEPA filter at least for your bedroom. The pollution here is really truly shocking. They can easily test if you've developed asthma or another reactive airway disease, so I would push for a referral if you keep getting sick. They can also easily check if your immune system is responding to viruses correctly (they give you the pneumonia vaccine and check the titers a few weeks later) so there's also that if you keep getting very ill for long periods of time. Don't let them fob you off. I really hope you feel better soon!

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Re: Chronic colds since moving to UK? Just me?
« Reply #13 on: June 26, 2019, 09:35:46 AM »
Perhaps because you have fresh air and lots of space and hardly any people around you?  :)

My first thought was, "yeah, that's true...", but then I remembered that half of my years in the UK were before we moved house, when we lived near Salisbury.  But then I thought about where we lived there... about 10 miles outside of Salisbury in a lovely little village surrounded by green and pretty rolling hills... I've been living in a lot of fresh air since I got here.

That house had mould, too.  KF could be right.  ;)
9/1/2013 - "fiancée" (marriage) visa issued
4/6/2013 - married (certificate issued same-day)
5/6/2013 - FLR(M)#1 in person -- approved!
8/1/2016 - FLR(M)#2 by post -- approved!
8/5/2018 - ILR in person -- approved!
22/11/2018 - Citizenship (online, with NDRS+JCAP) -- approved!
14/12/2018 - I became a British citizen.  :)


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Re: Chronic colds since moving to UK? Just me?
« Reply #14 on: June 26, 2019, 12:37:53 PM »
But the NHS is good in a life/death circumstance.  It's the day-to-day that leaves a bit to be desired....

Yes, the NHS has been especially amazing to the MIL right now who's been going through stuff.  Really quick and good care.  Except for pain relief after major surgery.  Where they told her to pick up paracetemol in Tesco.  ::)   No danger of an opioid crisis up here due to prescription pain killers. 
I've never gotten food on my underpants!
Work permit (2007) to British Citizen (2014)
You're stuck with me!


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