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Cold Or Flu – How Can You Tell The Difference?

Cold Or Flu – How Can You Tell The Difference?

Is it Cold or Flu Symptoms?

How do you know if you have cold or flu symptoms? Take your temperature, say many experts.

Flu symptoms often mimic cold symptoms with nasal congestion, cough, aches, and malaise. But a common cold rarely has symptoms of fever above 101 degrees (38,3 C).

With flu symptoms, you will probably have a fever initially with the flu virus and you will feel miserable. Body and muscle aches are also more common with the flu.

This can help you determine if you have cold or flu symptoms.

FEVER
Cold: Sometimes, usually mild
Flu: Usual; higher (100-102 F or 37,8-38,9 C; occasionally higher, especially in young children); lasts 3 to 4 days

HEADACHE
Cold: Occasionally
Flu: Common

GENERAL ACHES, PAINS
Cold: Slight
Flu: Usual; often severe

FATIGUE, WEAKNESS
Cold: Sometimes
Flu: Usual; can last 2 to 3 weeks

EXTREME EXHAUSTION
Cold: Never
Flu: Usual; at the beginning of the illness

STUFFY NOSE
Cold: Common
Flu: Sometimes

SNEEZING
Cold: Usual
Flu: Sometimes

SORE THROAT
Cold: Common
Flu: Sometimes

COUGH
Cold: Mild to moderate; hacking cough
Flu: Common; can become severe

COMPLICATIONS
Cold: Sinus congestion; middle ear infection
Flu: Sinusitis, bronchitis, ear infection, pneumonia; can be life-threatening

Usually, the time of year will give you some sense of what you’re dealing with. The standard flu season runs from fall to spring of the next year.

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