Can wet hair really make you sick? 

Have you heard this one? “Don’t go outside with wet hair, you’ll get sick!” Maybe it was your mother or grandmother who always cautioned you – either way, spoiler alert – it’s a common myth.

Simply having wet hair doesn’t make you sick and isn’t the cause of catching a cold. To cause a cold, a microorganism, like a virus, must be present. As a result, only exposure to a cold-causing virus (and not wet hair) can make you catch a cold.

However, this doesn’t mean you should sleep with wet hair, as hair that has been wet for an extended period, like overnight, may increase the risk of fungus growth, hair breakage and dandruff.

Let's look at five common cold myths.

Myth 1: Eating foods high in Vitamin C will stop a cold.

Fact: It’s often touted as a cold and flu helper, but actually, there’s inconsistent evidence around Vitamin C. There’s no scientific evidence that high doses of Vitamin C can prevent or treat colds. What's more, taking too much Vitamin C can cause diarrhoea.

Myth 2: A cold can turn into flu.

Fact: Different viruses cause the flu and the common cold. A cold cannot develop into the flu. The symptoms of the two illnesses are similar but if you have the flu, it was caused by the flu virus in the first place.

Myth 3: You’re only contagious when you have the flu.

Fact: You’re most contagious for the first two to three days after catching a cold. Stay at home to avoid infecting others. Get plenty of rest so you can recover quickly.

Myth 4: An antibiotic will help you get better quickly.

Fact: Because antibiotics don’t kill viruses, they will not help you recover from a cold. Antibiotics should only be used if your doctor has prescribed them. The more frequently you take these antibiotics, the more resistance to antibiotics you may build up.

Myth 5: You don’t have to treat a cold, it goes away on its own. 

Fact: Cold viruses can easily enter your body through your nose and eyes if they’re on your hands. Wash your hands often with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser that contains at least 60% alcohol. Keep your fingers away from your eyes. Also, stay away from people who are possibly sick. Drink plenty of water and warm drinks like tea or broth to stay hydrated. Honey will help relieve coughing, and ginger slices are good for reducing inflammation and congestion.

Good to know

Keep your distance from sick people. Wear a mask if you're out in public or in an intimate setting with a large group of people. It's critical to follow safety precautions,whether or not you've been vaccinated against COVID-19. Viruses that cause colds and flu are still circulating.


This article is for informational purposes only. Always check with your doctor or medical practitioner about any health concerns, before embarking on any fitness or nutrition programme, and usage of any medication.