How to distinguish flu, cold, and allergy

How to distinguish flu

Sometimes it is hard to distinguish allergy, cold, and flu. And you need to choose appropriate treatment.

A health professional can help you choose the best therapy.

Common Cold

Symptoms last up to 2 weeks

Stuffy, runny nose; sore throat; cough

Treated with rest, fluids, over-the-counter (OTC) medicines to ease symptoms

Seasonal Flu

Symptoms usually last 1-2 weeks

High fever (100-102 °F, or higher in youngsters), headache, aches and pains, weakness, exhaustion, cough, chest discomfort

Treated with rest, fluids, OTC medicines, prescription antiviral drugs

Airborne Allergy

Lasts as long as allergens (such as pollen, pet dander) are present

Stuffy, runny nose; itchy, watery eyes

Treated with antihistamines, decongestants, nasal steroids