Difference between cold and flu

It’s quite common to get confused between cold and flu since some of the symptoms are similar, from runny noses to headaches and body aches. If you are still confused over the key differences between cold and flu, then you need to read on. Both cold and flu can be quite debilitating in both intensity and duration and are equally contagious but that’s just on the surface. Both these respiratory disorders can weaken your immune system thereby leaving your body vulnerable. This is why it is important that you seek an immediate diagnosis at the earliest and effective treatment for the same.

Difference between cold and flu

Key differences between cold and flu

Cause: Both these respiratory illnesses are caused by viruses which are why both the cold as well as the flu can be quite contagious especially in the initial stages. What makes it even harder to tell the difference between both is the fact that some of the symptoms you are bound to come across happen to be quite similar, for example, both cold and flu are known to cause a runny nose, cough, sore throat and body, muscular pain, which is why at times it can be hard to tell the two apart,  It is vital that you consult a doctor once you develop some of the symptoms listed above; it should be pointed out that cold, on its own, is not chronic but flu can lead to serious health complications,  which is why it is vital you seek out immediate medical attention.

Diagnosis: Since it is hard to tell both apart, it is important to get yourself tested, especially the moment you start experiencing some of the symptoms so that you can seek out effective treatment at the earliest. Your doctor would conduct a few tests which should confirm the virus, and help determine whether you have a cold or flu. This, in turn, should enable him to provide you with the right medication for your current illness.

Symptoms: An onset of cold or flu can occur at any point of your life; with a cold you often wake up in the middle of the night with a coughing session, leading to a sore throat. This is usually followed by a runny nose, sneezing fits and you may even run a slight temperature. The good news is that cold symptoms usually go away after a few days unless you have an underlying health condition which can complicate the issue further, such as an auto-immune health condition. Whereas with flu, the symptoms are more or less similar, with body pain, and joint aches thrown in for equal measure. Flu can really take a toll on you and will lead to health complications if not treated on time. It is not unheard of for patients to develop high temperatures in excess of 100celcius, at which point, your doctor would have to determine if you require hospitalization or not.

Prevention: Prevention is the best cure possible and that’s certainly the truth where cold and flu are concerned. For one, if you suspect any of your loved ones happen to be suffering from either cold or flu, you may want to disinfect all utensils that they may have used, as a way to preventing contagion. It is not unheard of for one patient to infect the whole household; after all, that’s what a virus does, it spreads. So you can take effective countermeasures, such as ensuring that all clothes and utensils the patient may have used are disinfected and washed regularly. Additionally, you may want to wear a face mask when approaching the patient, so as to prevent airborne pathogens from infecting your body.

Health complications: As an adult male, chances are that your body has already developed antibodies to prevent infection by certain variants of cold and flu viruses; however, you may still be susceptible to other variants.  But the issue is that if you happen to suffer from a more serious health condition such as auto-immune disease or pneumonia, then a bout of cold or flu can aggravate your current condition, and complicate it further. This is why it is vital you seek out medical attention right away.

Medication: You can use both allopathic and homeopathic medications to help treat your cold and flu. It is advisable to drink lots of fluids, take a lot of bed rest on developing the symptoms listed above. You should be able to get back to your normal state, with accurate diagnosis and the right treatment, on time.

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