Home Green Brook Middle School Nurse’s Office Cold, Allergy, or Flu?

Cold, Allergy, or Flu?

Compare Allergy, Cold and Flu Symptoms?

The following chart can help you compare cold to seasonal allergy symptoms.

Symptoms Cold Allergies FLU
Fever Rare Rare Characteristic, high (100-102 degrees F); lasts three to four days
Headache Rare Sinus congestion, sinus headache Prominent
General Aches, Pains Slight No Usual; often severe
Fatigue, Weakness Quite mild Tired from restless sleep Can last up to two to three weeks
Extreme Exhaustion Never Never Early and prominent
Stuffy Nose Common Very common,
watery discharge
Sneezing Usual Very common Sometimes
Sore Throat Common Common from
post-nasal drip
Chest Discomfort,
Mild to moderate;
hacking cough
Cough is common from post-nasal drip Common; can become severe
Complications Sinus congestion
or earache
Bacterial Bronchitis Bronchitis, pneumonia;
can be life-threatening
Prevention Good hygiene 24-hr. Allergy medication as per Private Care Practitioner (PCP) Annual flu shot or FluMist
Treatment Only temporary
relief of symptoms
See PCP for treatment;
Daily 24hr. Non-drowsy allergy medication
See PCP for treatment; Antiviral drugs within 24-48 hours
of onset