Is it a cold, flu and H1N1?



    Seasonal illness usually starts with a sniffle, but here’s how to tell whether you’ve got a cold, the flu or the dreaded swine flu.







    Seasonal illness usually starts with a sniffle, but here’s how to tell whether you’ve got a cold, the flu or the dreaded swine flu.

    Each of the respiratory bugs are caused by a different virus, but there are a few differences between a cold and the two strains of flu.
     
    CNN.com reports that with a cold, patients will have congestion, a stuffy nose and a cough. There will also be some minor body aches, but flu will give you more serious pains. Also, when it comes to either type of the flu, you could suffer from diarrhea, dry coughs and severe fatigue. Flu patients are also prone to fever, dehydration and nausea.
     
    Unfortunately, it’s hard to tell whether you’ve been hit with seasonal flu or H1N1 unless you’re tested.
     


    "People need to take notice when they begin to feel bad. If they start to have respiratory problems, or are dehydrated because of a bug, they should go to the doctor. It could be H1N1 or seasonal influenza," Dr. Shmuel Shoham told CNN. "Some people with influenza can get very sick and could end up in the hospital if it’s not taken care of."
     
    According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 21 states have reported outbreaks of the flu and H1N1. But no matter where you live, the best defense against flu and swine flu would be to get a vaccine. It’s especially important that pregnant women, people suffering from chronic diseases and anyone between the age of 6 months old and 25 years old get their flu shots as they are the most vulnerable to the virus. People over the age of 50 and health care professionals are also at high risk of infection.
     
    Aside from the vaccine doctors recommend that you frequently wash your hands and keep them away from your face, especially your eyes nose and mouth. You should also sneeze into your elbow as opposed to your hands to stem the spread of germs. It’s also advised that you keep your distance from other people.
     
    But if you do fall ill it is extremely important that you see a physician. And in case you catch seasonal flu or H1N1, stay home for at last one full day after your fever has gone down.

     

     

    – Sonya Eskridge

     

     

     

    Here’s more:
    Dr. Sanjay Gupta battles swine flu
    Panel puts rush on vaccines
    South Africa to make its own H1N1 vaccine

     

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