Sneezing, coughing, achy, sore throat….is it a cold or the flu? Symptoms between the two can definitely overlap- so how can you tell the difference? While both are respiratory, a cold is a milder illness than the flu- it can make you feel bad for a few days, while the flu can make you feel pretty darn sick for a few days to weeks. The flu can also result in serious health problems such as pneumonia and hospitalizations. The time of year will also give you some sense of what you're dealing with. The standard flu season runs from fall to spring of the following year, so if you have symptoms in June (for example) it’s not likely the flu. 

Regardless, it can be hard to know for sure (your best option will be to visit your doctor), but here are some basic guidelines to determine if the symptoms you are experiencing are the cold or flu (source WebMD):

Symptoms

Cold

Flu

Fever

Rare, usually mild

High (100-102 F)

Can last 3-4 days

Headache

Rare

Intense

General Aches, Pains

Slight

Usual

Often severe

Fatigue, Weakness

Mild

Intense

Can last up to 2-3 weeks

Extreme Exhaustion

Never

Usual

Starts early

Stuffy Nose

Common

Sometimes

Sneezing

Usual

Sometimes

Sore Throat

Common

Common

Cough

Mild to moderate; hacking cough
 

Common

Can become severe

 




Comments (0)


Add a Comment





Allowed tags: <b><i><br>Add a new comment: