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How to Tell the Difference Between the Common Cold & the Flu
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You wake up in the middle of the night because you’re coughing and feel feverish. Thinking that it’s probably just a cold, you take medications and go back to bed. However, you feel worse in the morning and decide to visit your doctor only to learn that you have the flu. Here are a few signs that can tell you whether you have a common cold or the flu.

Blow Your Nose

If you have a cold, then you’ll notice that your nose will be stuffy and that there will be drainage as the virus leaves your body. There usually won’t be any kind of drainage if you have the flu. You might have difficulties breathing, especially if you have other health conditions, but the flu usually doesn’t present with a stuffy nose. You probably won’t sneeze as often with the flu as you would with a cold.

Cover Your Cough

The flu is often associated with a dry cough. With a cold, you’ll usually notice some kind of phlegm when you’re coughing. This is considered a productive cough that loosens mucus in your chest. Some of the phlegm that is expelled could be green or yellow. Once there is little to no color, then it’s often a sign that the virus is under control.

Soothe the Aches

One of the major differences that you’ll notice between the flu and a cold is an aching body. If you have the flu, then don’t be surprised if it’s difficult to move around because your muscles ache. This is often one of the first signs that you’ll notice with the flu, and it is one of the signs that come on fast before the other symptoms appear. You can take pain medications or stay in bed for a day or two in order to remain comfortable so that your body heals itself along with medications that you take.

Fight the Fever

Another difference that you’ll notice is a fever. This is one of the telling signs that you have the flu instead of a common cold because the flu is usually a stronger virus than a cold. A fever is present because your body is trying to fight against the virus to remove it from the body and alert you that something is wrong.

After a few days of a sore throat or coughing and sneezing with no relief, it’s a good idea to consider to determine if you should seek further treatment. Seek out an online doctor visit or call your regular doctor to see what treatment you should seek out.

By Hannah Whittenly
All rights reserved. Any reproducing of this article must have the author name and all the links intact.


Biography: Hannah Whittenly is a freelance writer and mother of two from Sacramento CA. She enjoys kayaking and reading books by the lake.

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