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The Difference Between a Cold and the Flu

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The Difference Between a Cold and the Flu Powered By Docstoc
					Presented by Daniel Toriola
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The Difference Between a Cold and the Flu By Steven A Johnson

The flu and the common cold are caused by different viruses, although they are both respiratory illnesses. It can be difficult to tell the difference between the two because both a cold and the flu have similar flu-like symptoms. Although, in general, the flu is worse than the common cold, and in the flu, fever, body aches, extreme tiredness and dry cough are generally more intense with the flu. People with colds are more likely to have a runny or stuffy nose. With a cold, serious health problem such as pneumonia, bacterial infections and hospitalization do not occur. It can be very difficult to tell the difference between a cold and the flu, without a doctor’s expertise, due to the fact that both cause many of the same symptoms. Special tests that can be taken at a doctor’s office can be taken to be sure if one has either. If a person has the flu, there is a special test that can be carried out within the first few days of the flu to tell if the flu is the cause of the person’s illness. The flu is generally more severe than a cold. People with a cold are more likely to have a runny or stuffy nose, and do not usually result in serious health problems. The symptoms of a cold can result in the following: Runny or stuffy nose (often with green- or yellow-colored discharge) Sore throat Cough Sneezing Fever up to 102 degrees Headache Fatigue Muscle aches

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Symptoms of the flu can result in: Stuffy nose Chills and sweats Muscle aches, especially in your back, arms and legs Nausea Fatigue Cough Headache Loss of appetite Fever over 102 degrees A cold and the flu are both caused by viruses. There are not many viruses that cause the flu, although, there are over 200 viruses that can cause a cold. Therefore, there is a shot that can prevent the flu, but there is not one that can prevent a cold. There is no cure for the common cold, but there are things that a person can do in order to ease the symptoms. A person will have to wait until the body can naturally fight off the virus on its own. The same is true for the flu, although, it is recommended that you treat the symptoms of the flu until you are feeling better. An anti-viral medication can be prescribed from your doctor, in severe cases, in order to shorten the length of time you are sick with the flu. These anti-viral medications can come in the form of a pill, syrup or an inhaler. Inhalers should be avoided in people who have asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Washing your hands frequently can help to avoid catching a cold or the flu. Other ways of boosting your immune system include eating healthy, exercising, and getting enough sleep. Alternative health supplements are also a great way to boost a person’s immune system. We offer numerous products that can help with a cold and the flu. Check out the cold and flu section on our web-site. Steven Johnson is interested in maintaining a vital and healthy lifestyle. For more information on various health products and other life-enhancing nutrients please visit his website http://www.alternative-health-supplements.com/cold-flu.htm

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Flu Symptoms (8) - Do I Have the Flu or Just a Cold? By Mark Thevenot

I feel horrible! - do I have the flu or is it just a common cold? This question is usually the 1st one that comes to my mind when I get that lousy-all-over-feeling that lets me know I've caught a winter season bug. Some of the symptoms of the flu (influenza) are very similar to those common to the common cold, however, there are some flu symptoms that are not. Here are 8 symptoms that are common to the flu. These tips may help you determine whether you have the flu and a proper course of action if you do. If you suspect you have the flu and not just a common cold, see your doctor within 48 hours if possible. He may be able to prescribe medications that will help lessen the severity of your symptoms. After 48 hours the available antiviral medications are much less effective. 1.) Fever of 100.4 F (38C) or higher. Fever is rare if you only have a cold but fever over 100.4 F for 3-4 days is common in up to 80% of flu cases. 2.) Muscle aches that are widespread throughout the body. Muscle aches are not common with a cold and if they do occur are normally slight. 3.) Very tired or exhausted feeling. The degree of tiredness is usually much more pronounced with the flu than with a common cold. 4.) Headaches are common with the flu but fairly uncommon with a cold. 5.) Chills are common with the flu but are uncommon with a cold. 6.) Sore throats are common with both the flu and a cold. 7.) Stuffy or runny nose. These are common with both the flu and a cold but are more common with children who have the flu than with adults with the flu. 8.) Stomach problems such as nausea, vomiting and diarrhea are sometimes associated with the flu a more common symptom with children - but uncommon with a cold. If you have any of the symptoms commonly associated with the flu, you should see your doctor ASAP – remember , as stated above, if within 48 hours of the onset of flu symptoms he may be able to treat you with antiviral medications that may reduce the severity of your symptoms and shorten their duration. After 48 hours the effectiveness of antiviral medications is substantially reduced. Here are a few other suggestions that may help get you through the misery of having the flu: 1) Get enough sleep - not only will sleep help your body recover more quickly from the flu but when you are asleep you are not suffering 2) take over-the-counter medications such as Tylenol or Advil or other brands of ibuprofen or acetaminophen 3) keep your room warm (but not hot) 4) monitor your fever 5) avoid contact with others(except your doctor)until you are well 6) do not continue working or strenuous daily activities until you are well. Prevention is better. To prevent the flu: Ask your doctor if he recommends that you get a flu shot each year before the flu season begins. Certainly you should see you doctor immediately if you suspect you already have the flu.

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Mark Thevenot authors family-friendly health articles. Visitors to his website, http://www.superrxcard.com, can print a free prescription drug discount card that is accepted at over 60,000 pharmacies.

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Patricia Johnson Patricia Johnson Management Consultant
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