Symptoms of Cold and Flu – People generally do not go to see a doctor when they suffer from flu or cold. Mostly, they stay at home, take rest, hydrate and take over-the-counter medications to treat their condition. But certain symptoms will require seeing a doctor during an emergency. It is important to know when you should act right away to avoid further progression of the disease and serious complications.

This is true for people who fall under higher-risk groups such as children who are young, pregnant mothers, adults 65 and above and people who have certain health conditions where there are greater chances of complications.

Symptoms of Cold and Flu - Definitiveinfo

Symptoms of Cold and Flu – Fever

The decision when you should see a doctor for fever usually has little to do with how fever is for adults. Having flu-related fever which improves but returns or worsens suddenly is the warning sign you need to seek medical attention. The issue will be different for kids. A child who suffers from fever above 104 degrees F should visit a doctor during urgency. Babies who are less than 12 weeks old need to be seen if they have fever, no matter the temperature.

Symptoms of Cold and Flu – Congestion

Symptoms of Cold and Flu - Definitiveinfo

Congestion is not major concern when you are having a flu or cold, but there are times when severe or persistent congestion should be looked at by a doctor. In the case of children or adults, a simple cold that does not go away may cause secondary infection like pneumonia, acute bronchitis or sinusitis. Most colds generally clear up in seven to ten days. The ones which last longer should be a cause for concern in children. Having nasal congestion and runny nose are common with colds than with flu. Both of them can increase the risk of sinusitis. You need to seek medical attention immediately when congestion persists for more than 10days or is accompanied with cough having bloody mucus, trouble breathing, fever above 104 degrees F and shortness of breath.

Symptoms of Cold and Flu – Cough

The cough which occurs from flu and cold seem to be annoying but the warning signs can be something serious. You need to be really concerned when a cough:

  • Is getting worse or persistent
  • Is interfering with breathing
  • Brings up unusual or excessive phlegm or mucus

In the case of kids, you need to seek medical care immediately when confronted with the following Symptoms of Cold and Flu:

  • Chest pain
  • Cough which improves but suddenly returns or worsens
  • Fast breathing
  • Coughing up bloody mucus
  • Fever over 104 degrees F
  • Bluish skin, lips or fingernails
  • Ribs that retract with each inhalation

For adults, a cough requires urgent medical care when there is:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Severe weakness
  • Persistent confusion or dizziness
  • Bloody mucus
  • Fever or cough that improves but suddenly worsens or returns
  • Shortness of breath
  • Persistent pressure or pain in the chest

Symptoms of Cold and Flu – Sore throat

Symptoms of Cold and Flu - Definitiveinfo

When your throat hurts badly that you cannot swallow, it is suggested to see a doctor. Though sore throat, also called pharyngitis is quite common with flu and cold, it should not be that bad to interfere with the ability to sleep, eat or drink. Most sore throats will improve by taking rest and at-home treatment. But severe sore throat should be seen by a doctor, when accompanied by a fever over 104 degrees F or when it interferes with the ability to breathe at the time of sleeping. Symptoms of Cold and Flu like these may denote a secondary bacterial infection.

In cases of strep throat or streptococcal infection, a red skin rash may accompany pain and throat soreness.

Symptoms of Cold and Flu – Headache

Headaches are common with flu and cold. They seem to happen when pressure accumulates in the nasal passages and sinuses with colds. Similarly, headaches are generally severe and may spread behind the eyes and over the forehead with flu. Mostly, headaches occur due to flu o cold which resolves on their own. An exception is secondary infection called encephalitis where flu virus infiltrates your brain and leads to inflammation.

Symptoms of Cold and Flu of encephalitis include:

  • High fever
  • Extreme light sensitivity
  • Extreme drowsiness
  • Severe headache
  • Vomiting
  • Loss of coordination
  • Nausea

Encephalitis can be treated as a medical emergency all the time. You should not take aspirin for treating headaches in kids below 14 years due to risk of Reye’s syndrome. You may take non-aspirin medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen.

Symptoms of Cold and Flu – Stomach Pain

Stomach pain is a not a common symptom of flu and cold but it has become common with some subtypes of influenza like H1N1. With H1N1 virus, abdominal pain is generally accompanied with vomiting and diarrhea.

The persistent abdominal pain denotes urgent medical care in people who suffer from flu.

Persistent vomiting or diarrhea may be the reason for dehydration when the body loses electrolytes and fluids it requires to function normally.

It is advisable to seek medical care when diarrhea or vomiting persists for more than 24 hours and is accompanied by signs of dehydration such as:

  • Rapid breathing
  • Dizziness
  • High fever
  • Quick hearbeat
  • Difficulty breathing
  • No urine in more than 12 hours
  • Seizures
  • Fainting or lightheadedness
  • Delirium

In the case of children, it is important to seek emergency care if there:

  • Are no tears when crying
  • Is lack of alertness at the time of awaking
  • Is no urine output in the last eight hours

It is advisable to see a doctor at the GP clinic in London when you find any Symptoms of Cold and Flu. This way, you can get rid of the Symptoms of Cold and Flu and treat yourself on time.

Priya Jatoliya

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