From the Jackson County Health Department: As we move into cold and flu season, it’s important to be able to recognize the differences between cold, allergy, COVID-19, & flu symptoms. However, these four ailments have similar symptoms. So how can you know whether you are dealing with allergies, a common cold, the flu, or COVID-19?
The biggest difference between the flu, cold, or allergies and COVID-19 is shortness of breath. The flu or cold does not cause shortness of breath unless it progresses to pneumonia. Other symptoms of COVID-19 are fever and dry cough.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the most common COVID-19 symptoms are:
- 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
Common cold symptoms include sneezing, stuffy nose, sore throat, mild to moderate chest discomfort, and cough.
Flu symptoms include fever or feverish/chills, cough, muscle or body aches, headache, fatigue, runny or stuffy nose, and sore throat.
Allergies are typically chronic conditions presenting with symptoms off and on depending perhaps on the season or your environment. Those suffering from allergies deal with itchy eyes, a runny nose, sneezing, and nasal congestion.
Check out our symptom guide:.