Seasonal allergies are something that many people suffer from. These will occur during the beginning of one or all seasons as the pollen from various plants is released into the air. It is possible for people to go years without knowing that they suffer from these allergies and confusing it with the cold.
The symptoms experienced between these two conditions are so similar and is why we confuse the two together. They both induce a runny nose, sore throat, sneezing, congestion, and a cough. However, each one are induce in contrasting ways and although they are the same they are also different.
The first thing to think about when distinguishing between the two is when they begin. If it is allergies then the symptoms will usually come all at one time during a particular season. If it is the cold then the symptoms will come in waves. Usually it will begin with a sore throat before the runny nose begins and then a fever.
How long do the symptoms last? People who suffer from the allergies will experience them for as long as they are being exposed to the allergy. When it comes to the cold it will usually only last for a week maybe two.
I know it sounds gross but try to examine the mucous coming from you runny nose. This is an easier way to differentiate between allergies and the cold. If it is yellow then you have the cold. If it is clear then it is only allergies.