The episode starts with SpongeBob asleep and having a dream about Krabby Patties. He awakens hungry with his stomach growling and makes a seanut butter and jellyfish jelly sandwich as a midnight snack. However, he falls asleep after the first bite, leaving the refrigerator open all night and freezing the entire house. By morning he has developed the suds, a sponge-exclusive sickness similar to a cold or influenza. Gary then suggests he stay home, but he refuses and goes to work anyway. At work he has a hard time doing his job, and when Mr. Krabs comes in to tell him off, Gary reveals to him that SpongeBob has the suds. Mr. Krabs then orders that he goes home to get some rest and that he can't have him sneezing all over the food. This causes the customers to panic.
Once at home, SpongeBob realizes he needs help, so he calls upon Sandy to take him to the doctor. She agrees, saying that she would be there faster than a barefoot jackrabbit on a hot greasy griddle in the middle of August. SpongeBob cuts her off and thanks her. SpongeBob then dresses warmly in anticipation of going to the doctor but is visited by Patrick who inquires if he is going skiing. SpongeBob explains that he is sick and going to the doctor.
Patrick then says that the doctor's office is a horrible, horrible place where they make you sit in the waiting room and read old magazines. SpongeBob horrified, asks Patrick to be his doctor. "Doctor" Patrick begins to practice on him, starting by plugging up all of SpongeBob's holes so bubbles won't come out. However, this causes SpongeBob to inflate every time he sneezes. SpongeBob thinks it's good enough. He then asks Patrick to call Sandy and tell her not to come. He does so, but Sandy doesn't buy it and continues coming. Patrick then tells SpongeBob to hurry up or else Sandy would take him to the doctor. He tries several things to cure SpongeBob's suds, including turning his foot into a sandwich, yanking a tooth, bouncing on him like a trampoline, putting a large band-aid on him repeatedly, and even putting him in a medieval torture device, by which time, Sandy had arrived. SpongeBob sneezes one more time (this time turning him into a perfectly round ball). Sandy demands Patrick open the door, but Patrick rolls SpongeBob out the back door and disguises him as a duplicate of his house. Sandy then questions Patrick why he has two houses. Patrick said that he had too much stuff. She then questions why his house had feet, Patrick responding that it was his "mobile home." SpongeBob then sneezes revealing himself. Patrick said that the dirt therapy was working just fine. Sandy said that he had to take him to a real doctor. Patrick refuses and told SpongeBob to open his mouth and say "AAAAAHHH," but when he does, his breath destroys nature. Sandy said that he was even worse than she thought while ripping a clothes pin off Patrick's "nose." They then fight over SpongeBob and accidentally fling him into the air. Patrick said that everything was fine until Sandy showed up and Sandy said that he should be arrested for impersonating a doctor. SpongeBob then rolled in front of the Krusty Krab, and the pressure from his plugged up holes becomes too much, causing a big sneeze that destroys the Krusty Krab. Sandy then takes SpongeBob to a real doctor, who prescribes the "sponge treatment," which is performed by a live human hand named Hans. This involves being rinsed with soap and used to scrub various objects and people. The treatment cures SpongeBob completely, and he even receives a lollipop. SpongeBob claims that he loves the doctor.
Wanting a lollipop, Patrick claims that he has the suds too whilst blowing a bubble to prove it. The doctor claims that he had a "special" treatment for Patrick. Hans then came and put soap on Patrick, and used him to clean a cactus, and even a toilet. The episode ends with Patrick saying "Wait, this doesn't seem right!"
Some fans assumed that this episode was continued from its sister episode, "Sleepy Time," as it begins at night with SpongeBob having a dream, the entire concept of the previous episode.
This is the only time Sandy threatens to have Patrick arrested, for impersonation of a doctor and she was actually right. It is illegal to impersonate a doctor as it requires doctor's insurance and a college bachelor's degree as well.
According to an interview in an issue of Nickelodeon Magazine, SpongeBob's voice actor, Tom Kenny, was very sick at the time of recording the lines for this episode.
SpongeBob mentions the suds again in "Whelk Attack," meaning this episode takes place before that episode.
MY LEG!: Everyone running panicking in the Krusty Krab when they thought SpongeBob sneezed on their food.
Here is a list of things that Patrick tried to do to make SpongeBob better.
Plugging his holes with corks (which caused him to inflate).
Putting SpongeBob's feet on peanut butter and bread.
Tying one of SpongeBob's teeth to the door then slamming the door.
Jumping on him.
Putting a massive bandage on his back then ripping it off when SpongeBob said "No" and then puts it back on in a different position.
Putting him in what looks like a medieval torture device.
Running Gag: When SpongeBob sneezes, bubbles come out of his holes. When SpongeBob sneezes with the corks on him, he inflates.
When Patrick puts on gloves and covers them in water he says "Don't touch me! I'm Sterile!" Sterile means "hotword" from living germs or microorganisms.
SpongeBob sneezes 19 times in the episode.
SpongeBob's treatment involved washing dishes, a foot, a man, a car and the floor.
Patrick's painful treatment included washing a cactus and a toilet.
This is the second episode to use an inverted image. In this episode, it occurred when the lightning went off in SpongeBob's dream. The first episode to use it was, "Culture Shock," when the flash cameras went off at the end of the episode.
Squidward, who should have been working at the Krusty Krab, is absent in this episode.
This marks the first time that the Krusty Krab is in an episode to not feature Squidward.
Despite premiering in 2000, this episode is copyrighted in 1999. The same goes with its sister episode ("Sleepy Time").
The man who was in the shower during SpongeBob's treatment was Tom Kenny, SpongeBob's voice actor.
In the Croatian dub, the episode name is "Zapjenio se", translating to "Foamed."
In the Japanese dub, the episode name is "Kazehiki SpongeBob," translating to "SpongeBob Catches a Cold."
Before SpongeBob sneezed which destroyed the Krusty Krab, the five maritime flags are missing from the Krusty Krab and a flower was on the left-hand side of the Krusty Krab, but after he sneezed the flags mysteriously reappear amongst the wreckage of the destroyed restaurant and the flower is gone.
As the inflated SpongeBob ball begins to roll down the hill, you can see it leads straight for downtown Bikini Bottom. Then, it heads for the Krusty Krab somehow.
In the shot when Patrick's "mobile home" is shown, SpongeBob's house is gone.
When SpongeBob comes rolling down and comes crashing into the Krusty Krab, the Chum Bucket was not there. The Chum Bucket was not there for the whole episode either.