Your spouse or children are bound to catch something this winter, it seems to happen every year. If you are lucky, it will be something like a cold or perhaps pink eye. But you could have a spouse or child fall victim to the flu or worse.

Whatever your family members come down with, make sure they have a warm home in which to recover. To ensure you have no heating breakdowns this winter, have Total Care Heating and Air in Riverside swing by and inspect and repair your furnace.

Here is a list of a few of the illnesses you should watch out for this winter and how you can best cope with them.

Common Cold

If this is all you have to deal with this winter, consider yourself lucky. Common colds come with a mild fever, coughing, congestion and possibly a sore throat. Take over-the-counter pain relievers for aches and pains and to reduce the fever. You also need to ensure whoever you are treating gets plenty of fluids and plenty of rest in their warm home.

Strep Throat

Strep throat is an infection caused by the Streptococcus bacteria. It can be passed through coughing or sneezing or by sharing utensils or a cup. It is quite common in kids aged five through 15.

One dead giveaway of this illness is an extremely painful throat. There will be a fever that can get quite high as well. A trip to the doctor will result in a prescription for antibiotics.

Pink Eye

Pink eye, also known by its formal mane, conjunctivitis, is an infection in the eye that can be caused by bacteria, a virus or allergies. If you or your child has been exposed to someone with pink eye, it spreads quite easily.

The symptoms of pink eye include bloodshot eyes, discharge, a crust that forms around the eyes as you sleep and itching. A warm compress will help relieve the itching. You will need antibiotic eye drops for pink eye caused by bacteria.


The flu is an upper respiratory infection caused by a virus. It can be caught by touching an unclean surface or by being too close to someone who is sick and sneezing and coughing.

The symptoms of the flu include a fever, chills, body aches, vomiting and fatigue. The flu is a viral illness and needs to be treated with fluids and bed rest until it has run its course. A flu shot will help protect you and your children from this infection.

Chicken Pox

Chicken pox is an old elementary school nemesis that has been knocked down by a vaccine. But it can still rear its ugly head. Since chicken pox is a virus that travels through the air, it is extremely difficult to avoid. Unless, of course, you are vaccinated.

Scarlet Fever

Scarlet fever is a bacterial infection caused by a strain of strep throat. The symptoms include a sore throat and a scarlet-colored rash around the neck and face that may spread throughout the body. This was once a deadly disease that is now easily treatable.

Somebody in your family is bound to be sick this winter, ensure your heater will be working well by scheduling an appointment with Total Care Heating and Air today.