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Covid vs. the Flu

Covid vs. the Flu

Why get the flu shot?

Why get the flu shot?

Who should get the flu shot?

Who should get the flu shot?

Booking Your Flu Shot

Booking Your Flu Shot

Learn More About Influenza

Learn More About Influenza

What’s the Difference of COVID-19 and the Flu?

Protecting your health is always a top priority. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic and flu season, it is of even more important to protect and monitor your health. This can help to keep you healthy and safe, along with your loved ones, coworkers and anyone else that you may come into contact with.

Influenza and COVID-19 are both highly contagious and often have similar symptoms, such as dry cough, fever and body aches. Knowing the difference between COVID-19 and influenza can help you to know what to look for if you begin to experience symptoms and better communicate with health professionals.

Influenza

The flu is associated with a range of symptoms that can often occur abruptly and usually last for 7-14 days. Symptoms often include:

  • Cough, which can often be severe
  • Fever and/or chills
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches, which can often be severe
  • Body aches and pains
  • Malaise (feeling unwell)

Symptoms that can sometimes occur include:

  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Sore throat
  • Diarrhea (sometimes for children)

COVID-19

The symptoms of COVID-19 can range from mild to severe, often lasting for 7-25 days. Symptoms can include:

  • Dry cough
  • Fever and/or chills
  • Body aches and pains
  • Malaise (feeling unwell)

Less common symptoms that sometimes occur include:

  • Sore throat
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Diarrhea 
  • Shortness of breath
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Loss of taste or smell
  • Chest pain or pressure
  • Rash or discolouration of toes or fingers, more often in children
  • Nausea or vomiting, more often in children

While rare, some do experience conjunctivitis (pink eye) and a runny or stuffy nose.

The Main Differences Between COVID-19 and the Flu

While there are some similarities between the flu and COVID-19, there are some differences that set them apart as well. With the flu, it’s unlikely that you will experience shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, a new loss of taste or smell, chest pain or pressure, rash or discolouration of fingers or toes, nausea, or vomiting. While these symptoms are not generally associated with the flu, they can be experienced with COVID-19. On the other hand, with COVID-19 it’s unlikely that you will experience sneezing,  runny or stuffy nose, along with fatigue and headaches.

 

While these symptoms can outline what is common and uncommon for both COVID-19 and the flu, everyone is different. If you feel unwell or experience any symptoms of the flu or COVID-19, it is recommended that you stay home, monitor your health closely and contact a healthcare professional right away.

How To Reduce Your Risk of Getting Sick

Get Your Flu Shot

The annual influenza vaccine can help to protect you during flu season. Not only can it help to prevent you from getting sick from the flu, but it can also help to reduce the risk of you spreading it to others. Contact your local PharmaChoice pharmacy to book an appointment for the flu shot today. Please keep in mind that the flu shot may not be available at all pharmacy locations.

Practice Proper Hand Hygiene

Your hands come into contact with a range of high-touch surfaces. Keep them clean and reduce bacteria with proper hand hygiene, including regular hand washing. You should wash your hands regularly with warm water and soap for at least 20 seconds each time. An alcohol-based hand sanitizer can provide an adequate alternative.

Healthy Diet and Exercise

Living a healthy lifestyle with regular exercise and a well-balanced diet can help to keep your immune system strong and thriving. We recommend using the Canadian Food Guide to plan your future meals, drinking enough water each day, engaging in regular physical activity, and communicating with your health team regularly to help improve your health and immune system.