Flu or Cold?

What's the difference between the flu and a simple cold?

Flu or cold... which is it?
What's the difference?

The flu:

The flu usually lasts longer than a cold. Its symptoms appear suddenly and are different: headache, muscle pain, dry cough and extreme fatigue.

  • Fever Sudden high fever (102F/39ºC-104º/40ºC) for 3-4 days
  • Headhache Common, sometimes severe
  • Generalized aches ans pains Common, sometimes severe
  • Fatigue and weakness Common, severe for up to 3 weeks and more
  • Extreme fatigue From the outset, sometimes severe
  • Runny, stuffy nose Common
  • Sneezing Sometimes
  • Sore throat Common
  • Chest discomfort,cough Common,can become severe
  • Complications Can lead to pneumonia and respiratory failure, worsen a chronic condition, can be fatal
  • Prevention Annual vaccination and frequent hand washing.

    A cold:

    Cold symptoms appear in the neck and throat. Colds occur mostly in the fall, winter and spring whereas the flu season is generally between January and March.

  • Fever Rare
  • Headache Rare
  • Generalized aches ans pains Sometimes, mild
  • Fatigue and weakness Sometimes, mild
  • Extreme fatigue Rare
  • Runny, stuffy nose Common
  • Sneezing Common
  • Sore throat Common
  • Chest discomfort,cough Sometimes, mild to moderate
  • Complications Possibility of sinus congestion or earache
  • Prevention Frequent hand washing.

    How to avoid cathing the flu or a cold?

    Viruses are primarily transmitted by hand-to-nose or hand-to-eye contact or by touching an object recently infected by another person. Flu or cold... the natural effective prescription is the same: you must wash your hands frequently and not touch your face. Furthermore, there is a flu vaccine (for those in favour of the vaccine). Talk to your doctor to find out if you are eligible to receive it. Fall is the best time to get vaccinated against the flu. Is it for you or not? That is for you to decide.

    For effective relief...

    Since either flu or cold is caused by a virus, antibiotics are ineffective since they only act on bacteria.
    Nasal congestion
    A decongestant in pill or nasal spray form is a common way to find relief. Tablets are fast acting BUT can cause trembling, palpitations and jitters. Avoid taking them before going to sleep. Insomnia can be reduced by using a decongestant containing an antihistamine (like Actifed®,etc)to relieve runny eyes and nose. But if you suffer from hypertension, heart disease, asthma or any other disease, consult your pharmacist before taking these products.
    OR... why not try some natural ways that are harmless:

    Grandma's natural remedy

    Either for flu or cold, I find that steaming your face really helps to open up your sinuses. This is also a relief to regular chest congestion as well as mild to medium coughing.
    If you don't know what steaming is, here is how I do it:

    1.) Boil about 5 cups of water(more or less)

    2.) Grab a towel and a bowl.

    3.) After water has boiled, sit at a table and pour the water in the bowl.

    4.) Quickly, letting very little heat escape, sit down and place the towel over your head and the bowl.

    5.) Sit there for about 15-20 minutes breathing in through your nose (if you have nasal congestion or head sinuses) or in through your mouth(if you have chest congestion and/or cough.

    This can be a bit boring, so why not listen to your favourite music. Close your eyes and relax while the treatment naturally takes place. It's free and quite effective, you'll see.

    PLUS: The steaming technique is also wonderful for a deep cleansing of the skin!Afterword rinse with cool water and apply your favourite acne creme on your skin!

    From this "Flu or Cold" page, back to "H1N1Flu" page

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