The last few weeks have been rough in our house. Half of the people that live here have been sick, and the other half have had to put up with them! lol. I’m kidding!! Well, kind of. While my heart went out to my husband and 2 sons who were suffering….if I had to listen to one more day of coughing I’m not sure what I would have done. :-) It really did seem to go on forever before it stopped…which got me thinking….were we dealing with severe colds or had we been hit with the nasty flu that is plaguing the entire country right now?
According to the Center For Disease Control, forty-six states are reporting widespread influenza activity, and it continues to spread. They are even advising that those suspected of having the flu should start on anti-viral medication even before lab tests can confirm.
So how do we know if we HAVE the flu? This simple chart from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) breaks it down for us:
Here is some more advice from doctors:
It’s the flu if…
“It hits you like a bolt of lightning. You’ll likely run a fever of above 101F, and you’ll be flat out. Chills, fatigue, muscle aches, and tightness of the chest are also characteristic of the flu. You might have a cough, or a runny nose, but you’re less likely to suffer from upper respiratory symptoms than you are with the cold.” ~~Steven Lamm, MD, internist and faculty member at NYU School of Medicine
It’s a cold if…
“The symptoms are predominantly above the neck. Runny nose, cough, watery eyes, sore throat, congestion, and sneezing signal a cold, and these unpleasant symptoms often build up over a day or two. You may feel achy or have a fever, but these will be much less severe than with the flu. ~~E. Neil Schachter, MD, author of The Good Doctor’s Guide to Colds and Flu
Hopefully this helps you….I know it helped me! I’m convinced now that we definitely had the FLU at our house. (Thank goodness it’s behind us! *knocking on wood*)
Regardless of whether you or your loved ones have a bad cold or the flu, there’s little doubt you’re going to feel pretty miserable. Here are some remedies from a recent post that might help: Simple, All-Natural Cold & Flu Remedies
And don’t forget…these daily preventive actions to stop the spread of germs are the most effective ways to fight the flu:
1. Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
2. Stay home when you are sick.
3. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing.
4. Wash your hands often.
5. Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
For those of you who are currently suffering with a cold OR the flu…..FEEL BETTER SOON!
For those of you who have avoided the nasty stuff….STAY WELL!