Five Ways to Tell if It’s a Cold or the Flu

It's that time of year again, when the sniffling and sneezing starts up. Telling the difference between a cold and the flu can be difficult, so here's a list of five tips to help you distinguish between the two.

1. In general, the flu is more intense than a regular cold and lasts for much longer. If you’ve been experiencing symptoms for a few weeks and have been completely exhausted, it's most likely the flu.

2. During a cold, your appetite will likely stay the same, even if you can’t taste correctly due to a stuffy nose. During a flu virus, you’re probably not going to be hungry at all.

3. Flu viruses can spike fevers to 100 degrees or higher. Pay attention to your temperature and if it gets to that point, it's probably the flu, so schedule an appointment with your doctor.

4. Sneezing is typically a cold symptom. It's rare to sneeze due to the flu.

5. If you felt fine one day and bad the next, the flu is most likely to blame. Colds tend to build up over a period, while the flu can hit you all at once.

Cold Versus Flu [CDC]
Is It The Cold or the Flu [Kids Health]
Is It the Flu or Just a Cold [Des Moines University]
The Common Cold Vs the Flu: What You Need to Know [Syracuse University]