SENIORS: Would You Know If Your Symptoms Were from the Flu, Cold, or COVID-19?

medicare, flu season, flu, common cold, flu symptoms, covid-19

This coming flu season will make it hard for seniors to distinguish between the flu and other illnesses. Is it a cold, the flu, or COVID-19? Here’s what you must know in order to stay safe this winter.

It can be hard to tell if you have COVID-19, especially because coronavirus symptoms vary from person to person. But for seniors and those who are immunocompromised and at greater risk for both flu and COVID, it’s crucial to know what the symptoms are and when to get tested. 

COVID-only symptoms

Here are the top symptoms that are particular to COVID-19. The main symptom that differentiates coronavirus from the flu is a sudden loss of taste or smell:

  • Sudden loss of smell or taste that takes time to recover
  • Dry cough 
  • Long duration of symptoms
  • A wide range of symptoms
  • Symptoms starting off mild and gradually worsening
  • High chance of fever
  • Blotchy purple or red rashes
  • Blood clots
  • Chest pain
  • Severe headaches
  • Kidney failure

Overlapping symptoms of COVID, cold, and flu

Here are symptoms that are common to the common cold, the flu, and COVID-19:

  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Body aches
  • Upper respiratory symptoms
  • Cough
  • Pneumonia
  • Gastrointestinal symptoms

What you can do

Doctors say that getting a flu vaccine this year is more important than ever since getting any kind of vaccine can boost your immune system and help protect you from COVID-19 and other illnesses.

If you experience shortness of breath, chest pain or pressure, or confusion, see a doctor right away. If you are not sure whether it’s COVID or not, get tested. You wouldn’t want to unknowingly infect others. It is now far easier to get a COVID test than it was earlier in the pandemic.

Stay safe this flu season by keeping socially distant, washing hands regularly, using hand sanitizer, and getting your flu vaccine. While outdoor gatherings are safer, you can gather indoors as long as you wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth and keep a safe distance from others. That being said, if you don’t feel comfortable getting together with others, that is just fine, too. Keep up with us on Facebook and let us know how you are doing this flu season. 

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