What is the difference between a cold and the flu?
The flu and the common cold are both respiratory illnesses but they are caused by different viruses. Because these two types of illnesses have similar symptoms, it can be difficult to tell the difference between them based on symptoms alone. In general, the flu is worse than the common cold, and symptoms are more common and intense. Colds are usually milder than the flu. People with colds are more likely to have a runny or stuffy nose. Colds generally do not result in serious health problems, such as pneumonia, bacterial infections, or hospitalizations. Flu can have very serious associated complications. If you think might have the flu, seek medical attention by visiting your primary care physician.
How to prevent the spread of the flu:
You can try to avoid sick people, but that’s not always easy to do, especially when you’re in close quarters like movie theaters and malls. If you can’t steer clear of the virus, at least use good hygiene to create a barrier against flu germs.
- Wash your hands with warm water and soap every time you shake hands or touch a surface that might be germ-covered.
- Carry an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with you for times when you can’t get to a sink.
- Bring along disinfectant wipes to clean any surfaces you’re about to touch.
- Take extra care to not touch your mouth, eyes, or nose without washing your hands first.
- Schedule a visit with your primary care physician to receive your flu shot
- Call the Montgomery County Public Health Clinic to see if you are eligibility for a low cost flu shot.
- You can stop by at any retail or drug store pharmacy to receive your flu shot on the go!
Sign and Symptoms:
|Muscle or body aches
|Runny or stuffy nose
Do you have the flu already? What to do next:
If you want your immune system to be in good enough shape to fight off the flu and other germs, you need to stay healthy.
- Eat a balanced diet
- Drink plenty of water
- Get plenty of rest
- Stay home until you feel better and your fever has been gone (without the help of medicine) for at least 24 hours.
- Sneeze into your elbow, not your hand. That way you can’t pass it around.
- Toss used tissues after you blow your nose.
All these will give your body the strength it needs to fend off the flu virus.