You’re sick and you figure it’s probably just a cold so you don’t need to go see your doctor, right? Well, the flu and the common cold are both caused by viruses and they have similar symptoms. The flu is usually more severe and can cause death in certain vulnerable populations like the immunocompromised, elderly and young children. Here are the symptoms of the common cold and of the flu so you can tell which illness you or your loved one is up against:
What’s the difference? :
|Onset||3-6 hours of exposure||Gradual over a few days|
|Fever||Common – range 101 – 103||Less common – low grade possible|
|Chest Discomfort||Common||Less Common|
|Stuffy Nose||Less Common||Common|
|Sore Throat||Less Common||Common|
It is always a good idea to call your doctor if you exhibit two or more of the flu symptoms listed. And, if you are lucky enough not to be sick, remember your best defense against most illnesses is frequent hand washing. For flu, everyone six months of age and older should also get extra protection with a flu vaccine.
More information about the flu can be found at http://flu.gov.