MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT)- Tis’ the season of runny noses and bad coughs. But how can you tell the difference between the flu and the common cold?
Dr. John Wood, emergency center director for Navicent Health, says the hospital has seen patients come in with flu-like symptoms.
“The cold and flu are similar,” Dr. Wood said. “You get the coughing, fever, runny nose and body aches but the flu tends to be a lot worse.”
Dr. Wood says if you are running a fever and have not gotten your annual flu shot, you need to see the doctor immediately.
“You have a short window to get medicine in your system, while we do have medications that can help within the first 30 hours of the symptoms, prevention is best,” Dr. Wood said.
Navicent Health says people should get the flu shot once a year.
If you do get the flu, you could experience high fevers, body aches, and experience sickness for up to 14 days.
Dr. Wood suggests washing your hands constantly to prevent the spread of germs.
“We want to remind people to wash their hands or use hand sanitizer, particularly after touching commonly used surfaces like shopping carts or gas pumps,” Dr. Wood said.
If a patient has difficulty breathing, severe chest and abdominal pain, or severe and continuous vomiting, they should visit the emergency room.
Navicent Health encourages anyone with symptoms such as fatigue, sore throat, cough and fever to visit an Urgent Care center and use the Express Visit check-in option, located at www.navicenthealth.org.