Colds versus Flu: How to Tell the Difference
What is the difference between a cold and the flu?
The flu and the common cold are both respiratory illnesses but they are caused by different viruses. It can be difficult to tell the difference between them based on symptoms alone. In general, the flu is worst than the common cold, and symptoms such as fever, body aches, extreme tiredness, and dry cough are more common and intense. Colds are usually milder than the flu. People with colds are more likely to have a runny or stuffy nose. Colds generally do not result in serious health problems, such as pneumonia, bacterial infections, or hospitalizations. With the flu you almost always have a fever.
You should contact your doctor if symptoms change or get worse
Source: Center for Disease Control and Prevention
What can I do to prevent the flu?
Get a flu vaccine.
Avoid close contact with people who have respiratory symptoms, such as a cough.
Stay home when you are sick.
Wash your hands often.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth because this is how a virus can get into your body.
Practice other good health habits: getting enough sleep, staying active, drinking plenty of fluids, and eating healthy.