What Are The Symptoms Of Flu
Flu symptoms are often severe and come on quickly. If you have a fever and body or muscle aches right away, you may have the flu virus. Symptoms commonly include:
- High fever
- Sometimes nausea and diarrhea
Most symptoms improve over the course of a few days, but youll likely feel run down for a week or two. The flu is caused by the influenza virus, which leaves you contagious for a few days, so its important to stay home and rest.If you suspect you or a loved one have the flu, be aware of your risk of developing serious health issues. The flu can lead to serious health problems like pneumonia, especially in people who are young, elderly or have heart or lung problems, says Dr. Martin.As with the common cold, antibiotics wont help your flu symptoms, but getting rest, fluids and using over-the-counter medicines can help ease your symptoms.Your healthcare provider may prescribe an antiviral medication, which can help you feel better sooner and may prevent complications like pneumonia.
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There are various legal requirements to isolate if youre sick, and public health agencies across the country are recommending isolation for COVID-like symptoms and exposure to those who have COVID-19, even if you, yourself, arent feeling ill.
The Public Health Agency of Canada suggests eating well and exercising while in isolation and using video calls to stay in touch with friends and family.
Understanding Colds Flu And Covid And Your Treatment Options
Maureen Caro, FNP-BC, Family Nurse Practitioner
This winter is gearing up and along with it are the cold and flu! Everyone is very concerned about COVID-19, and there is considerable overlap with symptoms from cold, flu and COVID-19. Of course, the best information comes directly from your provider! At Health Partnership Clinic, we encourage our patients to utilize the patient portal and email any questions or concerns.
A general rule of thumb for differentiating cold and flu is that you can work through a cold, but you cant work through flu. Of course, I am not recommending anyone go to work with any kind of symptoms this year! However, people coming in pajamas and uncombed hair and falling asleep in my clinic are likely suffering from flu versus a simple cold. Flu tends to cause a fever , muscle aches, severe headache, fatigue. Cough, congestion, and sometimes diarrhea is also common. Colds tend to be more of an annoyance, a little cough, post-nasal drainage, feeling tired.
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Is It Safe To Come To Uchicago Medicine
Absolutely. Your safety and the safety of our staff is our highest priority, and we have implemented a number of practices to ensure you can get the high-quality care you need.
- Our healthcare workers have been fully supplied with highly effective personal protective equipment and trained in its use in order to protect our patients and themselves. We are also requiring employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19.
- We have dedicated spaces for treating coronavirus cases that are separate from the general patient population.
- Staff, patients and visitors are required to participate in universal masking to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
- All employees and patients are instructed to follow the Centers for Disease and Control guidelines for social distancing of remaining 6 feet apart, including in waiting areas.
- Staff are also minimizing the time patients spend in waiting areas. This means patients will either be brought directly into patient rooms or, at some locations, patients will be checked in by phone in their car and asked to come when their exam room is ready. In the event a waiting room must be used, seats are spaced out to maintain social distancing.
- In addition, clinics are performing the normal check-out process and follow-up scheduling by phone to avoid patients congregating in waiting areas.
What Should I Do If I Think I Might Have Covid
First and foremost, if you are experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19 which include fever, muscle and body aches, cough and sore throat stay at home, self-isolate and rest. You may also be able to be tested for the virus at a curbside testing clinic by going through a telephone triage or electronic screening process.
Monitor your temperature and drink plenty of fluids. Continue to wash your hands often, disinfect frequently touched surfaces in your home and stay away from other people as much as possible. If your condition worsens, reach out to your doctor. This is particularly important if you experience more severe symptoms, are over 60, or have additional health issues. People with hypertension and diabetes, who have weak immune systems, who smoke, with underlying lung disease, or who take medicines to suppress their immune systems because they have cancer or an autoimmune condition are at higher risk for COVID-19.
Youll need to stay home for 72 hours after you recover.
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Should You Always Get Tested For Covid
The CDC continues to tweak its guidance for who should get tested for COVID-19and, it can be confusing.
Besides recommending testing for individuals with symptoms of COVID-19 or upon referral by a health care provider or state health department, the CDC now advises testing for asymptomatic patients who have had a high risk exposure to someone with a confirmed case, Khabazza explains.
Asymptomatic and pre-symptomatic infections are major contributors to the community spread of coronavirus, the CDC says, and the organization had recommended these individuals get tested for COVID-19. However, the organization recently adjusted its testing recommendations to say that asymptomatic cases do not need to be tested even if the individual has been exposed to the virus.
Youll Have A Severe Reaction
This can include shortness of breath, tightness in the chest, coughing up thick mucus, loss of appetite, chills, sweating and new loss of taste and smell. A severe reaction to COVID-19 can land you in intensive care and can lead to pneumonia, respiratory failure, sepsis and, at worst, death. According to the World Health Organization, about 1 in 5 people will have a severe reaction. Older adults and those with chronic or underlying conditions are more likely to have this type of reaction.
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Don’t Stay Locked Down
“If you’re thinking, ‘OK, I kinda wanna start to get back out there in the world a little bit.’ I don’t see a problem with that,” advised Baker. “The bottom line is, we’re not in lockdown anymore. If you wanna go out, go out. Just be safe about it.” That includes staying informed about the COVID infection rate in your local area, and adjusting your plans based on your personal level or risk tolerance and current medical guidance. And to get through this pandemic at your healthiest, don’t miss these35 Places You’re Most Likely to Catch COVID.
Side Effects And Considerations
While DayQuil is considered safe if used as directed, it can cause nervousness, dizziness, or sleepiness in some and should be avoided in the following circumstances:
- DayQuil can cause liver damage in people who drink more than three alcoholic beverages per day. Do not take DayQuil with other medications containing acetaminophen. Taking excessive acetaminophen may cause liver damage even in non-drinkers.
- Do not take DayQuil if you are taking a monoamine oxidase inhibitors or have taken one in the past two weeks. MAOIs are a class of drug used to treat depression, anxiety, and other mood disorders.
- You should stop taking DayQuil and call your healthcare provider if your cold or flu symptoms worsen, last for more than seven days, or are accompanied by a fever lasting for more than three days. For children, the same rules apply if the cold or flu symptoms last for more than five days.
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Should You Take Zinc For A Cold Or Covid
This immune-boosting mineral has been popular during the pandemic. Heres a look at what it can actually do.
Although many of us are getting fewer colds this year than usual , were also more concerned than ever with keeping our immune systems strong. For some, that means reaching for supplements thought to boost your bodys defenses, and zinc is one of the more popular choices. According to estimates from Nutrition Business Journal, consumers spent $162 million on zinc supplements in 2020, a 35 percent increase over the previous year.
Zinc has a reputation for ending colds more quickly and helping you feel better faster. But as with many supplements, the science surrounding the claims still hasnt quite caught up to consumer interest.
We know that people take it a lot, but we also know there isnt a lot of scientific validation for zinc supplementation, says Suma Thomas, MD, a cardiologist at the Cleveland Clinic who has studied the possible effects of zinc supplements on COVID-19 patients.
Zinc supplements arent regulated by the Food and Drug Administration in the same way that medications are. So before you decide to spend your money on zinc pills or lozenges, keep these five points in mind.
Are Masks Required For My Visit How Is Uchicago Medicine Enforcing Social Distancing Requirements
UChicago Medicine is adhering to universal masking practices for all patients, visitors and staff.
- All patients are required to wear a face mask at all times. They will be issued a face mask upon entrance to our facilities if they do not have one of their own. It is highly recommended for patients to wear masks on their way to any of the UChicago Medicine locations.
- All visitors are required to wear a face mask at all times. They will be issued one upon entrance to our facilities if they do not have one of their own. Masks with vents are not allowed.
- All healthcare workers, non-clinical support staff and all other UCM employees are required to wear a face mask at all times in all locations of our hospitals and clinics, including parking garages and outdoor spaces on our medical campuses.
Social Distancing Requirements
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How To Avoid Spreading Covid
COVID-19 can easily be passed from one person to another. It can spread in droplets in the air or left on surfaces after a sick person coughs or sneezes. It can also spread if someone touches a sick person and then touches their eyes, nose, or mouth.
Follow the instructions in this section to help keep COVID-19 from spreading to people in your home and community.
- If you have COVID-19 symptoms and are waiting for your test results, follow these instructions until:
- You get your test results and theyre negative. If you had a rapid test and get a negative result, get a PCR test to check your results. Keep following these instructions until you get a negative PCR test result.
When Should You Seek Emergency Medical Attention
According to Mayo Clinic, here are the emergency warning signs associated with COVID, which indicate a person should call 9-1-1 and seek medical assistance immediately:
- Trouble breathing
- Persistent chest pain or pressure
- New confusion
- Pale, gray or blue-colored skin, lips or nail beds depending on skin tone
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Zinc May Help Shorten A Cold But Won’t Help With Symptoms
There is some evidence that sucking on zinc lozenges within 24 hours of first feeling cold symptoms may shorten its duration by a day or two, but theres little to indicate that it eases cold symptoms, such as congestion, cough, or muscle aches.
A 2017 analysis published in Open Forum Infectious Diseases of three previous studies found that people who took 80 to 92 mg per day of zinc got better faster. By the fifth day, 70 percent of those taking zinc had recovered, compared with just 27 percent of those given a placebo.
A 2020 analysis published in The American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene reported similar reductions in duration but found conflicting evidence on whether zinc supplements had an effect on the severity of cold symptoms. In other words, you may be stuffed up and sniffling for fewer days, but on the days youre sick youre likely to feel just as lousy.
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Finding the best ways to do good.
Theres still a lot we dont know about the coming omicron wave, but theres one thing we can be pretty sure about: A lot of people are going to get sick. Omicron is highly contagious, and people with previous immunity from a Covid-19 infection, or from vaccination, appear more vulnerable to omicron than to previous variants.
For vaccinated people, omicron cases are likely to be mild, but even a small fraction of cases resulting in hospitalization can overwhelm our hospitals if enough people get sick at once which looks likely to happen.
That means that as the wave sweeps the country, people will have an obvious if critical question: What treatments are available to me if I get sick with Covid-19?
The good news is that scientists have more answers to that question than they did two years ago when Covid-19 first hit. Most of the treatments that researchers have tested in large clinical trials havent panned out, but a few look promising, including some that are cheap and safe. If you get sick, its worth fully exploring your options. We asked experts how the best existing treatments are expected to stand up to omicron in particular, and what to look into if you get sick.
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Keep Track Of Your Temperature
- Measure your temperature 2 times every day: once in the morning and once in the evening.
- If youre getting chemotherapy and have a new fever of 100.4 °F or higher, call your healthcare provider.
- If you have a fever of 102 °F or higher that lasts for 24 hours and doesnt get better after you take acetaminophen, call your healthcare provider.
Hot Or Cold Temperatures Can Mess With Test Components
The temperature at which you store your home-test kit matters.
The little vials of liquid meant to be mixed with your sample are not designed to withstand extreme temperatures or humidity.
“Don’t use rapid tests when it’s really cold. That can diminish their benefit or their efficacy,” Michael Mina, chief science officer of eMed, said on a call with journalists Tuesday afternoon. “You want to do it at room temperature for the most part.”
Recommended temperatures for storage and preparation can vary among tests, so make sure to check the packaging first.
The BinaxNow kit, for instance, can be stored from 35.6 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit, but a fine-print warning says to make sure all test components are at room temperature before use.
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How To Keep Distance From People You Live With
If you live with family or flat mates, keeping distance is challenging.
The ultimate goal is that you’re not sharing air with anyone else. That means sleeping in a separate room, having a separate bathroom, and not being in the same spaces, such as the kitchen or living room. Ideally, have friends or family drop off food and drink outside your door for you to collect.
If you are sharing a bathroom or appliances, you should also make sure to wash your hands and the surfaces regularly to avoid cross contamination.
“When you have to be in a shared space, like a bathroom or a living room, you make sure that time-wise, you keep it so that you’re not both in that same space at the same time. As much as you can, you wipe down surfaces,” Dr. Rishi Desai, chief medical officer at Osmosis, and a former Epidemic Intelligence Service officer at the CDC, previously told Insider’s Hilary Brueck.
Adding lots of space and time into the equation helps prevent virus transmission to new people, Desai added. “For every minute that passes, the amount of virus in the air diminishes.”
These days, many states and cities are providing free accommodation for people with COVID-19 who can’t isolate in their own homes. In New York City, for example, you can qualify for the COVID-19 Hotel Program if you or someone you live with tests positive, and:
- Your home does not have space for you to stay six feet away from others.
- You share rooms or a bathroom.
- You live with someone who is vulnerable.
How To Treat Symptoms
- For a fever over 101, alternate Tylenol and Advil so youre taking a dose of one or the other every 3 hours.
- Use both cough suppressants and expectorants .
- Drink a ton, hydrate hydrate.
- Rest lots.
Most healthy people will have mild symptoms. A study of more than 72,000 patients by the Centers for Disease Control in China showed 80 percent of the cases there were relatively mild.
But infections can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death, according to the World Health Organization. Older people with underlying health conditions are most at risk.
The CDC believes symptoms may appear anywhere from two to 14 days after being exposed.
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