Don’t know the difference between a cold and the flu?  Here are a few questions you may have that can help you spot the differences!

sick womanQ. I woke up with a sore throat and a runny nose. Is it a cold or the flu?
A. While you could possibly have the flu, colds showcase much milder symptoms. The flu will give you more severe symptoms such as body aches, a dry cough, and excessive fatigue.

Q. Do flu-like symptoms come on gradually, or start suddenly?
A. Flu symptoms come on very suddenly, usually within three to six hours after being infected.

Q. Will the flu make me tired?
A. Being exhausted is usually a common symptom of the flu so if you feel like you can’t get out of bed, don’t.

Q. Can I catch the flu from someone who doesn’t look sick?
A. Any person can spread the flu before they look sick, so they end up passing around the virus without even realizing it. It’s always best to avoid making physical contact with sick individuals, and to practice good hygiene in the case you come into contact with someone who may be sick.

Q. Should I stay home if I have a cold?
A. It just depends upon how you’re feeling. If you’re feeling tired and feel like you can’t focus on your tasks, it may be a good idea to take a sick day. If you do end up going to work, be sure to cover your coughs and sneezes to avoid spreading germs to your coworkers.

Q. Can I go back to work after my symptoms subside?
A. You should wait at least 24 hours for your symptoms to go away, so it’s best to avoid going into work, and you should avoid traveling, attending social events, and other outings until after your symptoms have subsided naturally without using medicine and once your temperature has gone back to normal.

Q. When will I most vulnerable for catching the flu?
A. You can catch the flu at any time, but flu season usually lasts from October to May, with January and February being peak flu times. It’s always best to get your seasonal flu shot in the fall, right before the flu season starts, so your body has time to build up immunity.

Coming down with flu-like symptoms? Visit AFC Urgent Care Shelton for treatment. We’ll get you in and out fast, so you can feel better sooner. For more information about the services we provide, please call us at 203-567-4171.