During the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, with flu season right around the corner, it’s more important than ever to know the difference between COVID-19 and influenza symptoms and to make sure you’re not spreading either one! While some of the symptoms are similar in many aspects, there are some key differences that help with an accurate diagnosis. Unfortunately, both are contagious respiratory illnesses and it may be hard to tell the difference.
Some of the symptom similarities include shortness of breath, fever, fatigue, coughing, a sore throat, and body aches. The biggest symptom difference in COVID cases includes a loss of taste and/or smell, unusual skin rashes, and abdominal pain. Coronavirus is also contagious for much longer. Patients are contagious for roughly 2 days before symptoms, while symptoms are present (typically 10-14 days) and up to 10 days after symptoms have subsided, while the flu is contagious for about 1 day before a patient shows symptoms. Older children and adults with flu appear to be most contagious during the initial 3-4 days of their illness but many remain contagious for about 7 days. Infants and people with weakened immune systems can be contagious for longer.
Both COVID-19 and the flu can spread from person to person through respiratory droplets when speaking, coughing, or singing. In general, when people catch the flu, their symptoms appear quickly. With the novel coronavirus, however, the symptoms may not appear for 4-14 days after exposure. That’s why it is essential to get tested. Patients can utilize Physician 360’s COVID-19 and flu rapid tests in our partner pharmacies, along with a virtual medical professional consultation. COVID-19 saliva tests are available directly from our website. Get started here.
You can also get an immediate telemedicine consult, diagnosis, and treatment with our rapid flu test or online consultation right in the pharmacy. Use our pharmacy finder to find the closest pharmacy to you that carries Physician360 products.
You can buy flu and COVID-19 rapid test kits in the pharmacy for everyone in your household while staying socially distant and safe the entire time.
While the flu and COVID-19 are symptomatically similar and difficult to navigate during the pandemic, Physician360 makes it easy to get tested and talk to a medical professional with no further risk to your community.