Covid-19 and Influenza (flu) are two contagious respiratory illnesses, however, they are caused by different viruses. Covid-19 is caused by infection with a coronavirus first identified in 2019. Flu is caused by infection with a flu virus (influenza viruses). Due to the flu and the common cold having all most the same symptoms, it can be difficult to tell the difference between them based on symptoms alone. usually, the flu is worse than the common cold, and symptoms are typically more intense and begin more suddenly. Colds are usually milder than flu. People with colds are more likely to have a runny or stuffy nose than people who have flu. Colds generally do not result in serious health problems, such as pneumonia, bacterial infections, or hospitalizations.
- Pneumonia: an illness where the lungs get infected and inflamed
- Dehydration: when a child’s body loses too much water and salts, often because fluid losses are greater than from fluid intake
- Worsening of long-term medical problems like heart disease or asthma
- Brain dysfunction such as encephalopathy
- Sinus problems and ear infections
- In rare cases, flu complications can lead to death.
Symptoms of Covid-19
People with COVID-19 have has a wide range of symptoms reported-ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. Anyone can have mild to severe symptoms. People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:
- Fever or chills
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Muscle or body aches
- New loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Congestion or runny nose
- Nausea or vomiting
This list does not include all possible symptoms. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will continue to update this list as we learn more about COVID-19. Older adults and people who have severe underlying medical conditions like heart or lung disease or diabetes seem to be at higher risk for developing more serious complications from COVID-19 illness.