I missed getting a flu shot at the fair, so this week it's at the top of my list. It's that time of year when you are likely hoping you're just dealing with a cold and not the flu, but there are ways to tell.
Medical experts says there is huge overlap among non-influenza viruses and the symptoms produced by influenza and other bugs but there are some differences.
Time Magazine is reporting in information from University of Wisconsin medical experts - Usually a cold takes a few days to build up, while the flu comes on quickly. Also, a cold usually lasts about three to five days, while a flu tends to last about twice as long, and a fever is much more common among flu patients, along with headaches, body aches, and a dry cough.
However, if you have cough that produces a lot of mucus or fluid, you have a sore throat, and you're sneezing or dealing with a runny nose or head congestion, those symptoms are more typical of a cold. Additionally, colds are most common in early fall, and in spring (though can still be a concern year-round), but the flu is usually confined to its winter schedule.
Before you head to the emergency room it's important to note that for most healthy adults and kids, colds and flu usually don't require a doctor's attention, but if you're still feeling bad after a week, or if your symptoms seem to be getting worse after the first few days, or your fever reaches 103 degrees Fahrenheit, you should see a doctor.