Colds and Flu –  Know the Difference

If you wake up coughing, sneezing, achy, and feverish would you know if you had a cold or the flu?  It’s important to know the difference between cold and flu symptoms. The common cold and the flu are both respiratory illnesses with similar symptoms.  The main difference being the severity of the symptoms.  Flu Symptoms generally come on quickly and are more severe.  Most common symptoms are high fever, body aches, cough and sore throat.  Some flu syndromes can include nausea or vomiting.  Colds gradually get worse over a few days and include runny or stuffy nose and often a sore throat.


Cold and flu treatment require different treatment.  For colds, the doctor will likely  recommend rest and plenty of fluids.  Over-the-counter medications and sometimes prescription medications are recommended to help control sneezing and cough.  Flu treatment typically includes prescription drugs such as anti-virals to help you get better faster and make symptoms less severe. Our doctors recommend starting treatment for the flu as soon as possible after getting sick, so it’s important that you come in as soon as you notice the first symptoms.  Results will likely take longer if you wait too long after noticing symptoms.



When to visit us:

If cold symptoms do not improve after three to five days or you notice symptoms getting worse you should see your Urgent Care Doctor.   In some cases, the Flu can result in another infection and can lead to pneumonia or hospitalizations.


If you already have Cold and Flu symptoms, Its important to come in if any of the following are severe:

  • Persistent fever

  • Painful to swallow

  • Persistent cough

  • Persistent congestion and headache