Coronavirus vs Flu: What’s the Difference?

COVID-19 isn’t like the flu.  While some people are dismissive about the seriousness of this novel coronavirus, the truth is it isn’t the same as the flu.  There are important differences that you need to know when it comes to the coronavirus vs. the flu. For one thing, it has a higher mortality rate than seasonal flu, which has a mortality rate of 0.1% of infected patients..

Coronaviru Symptoms vs. Flu Symptoms

The flu and the novel coronavirus are respiratory diseases that can spread quickly and easily from one person to another. Their symptoms, however, have differences.  People with the flu will experience symptoms that will last for 1-4 days. The incubation period is 1-3 days. However, COVID-19 symptoms may appear between 1-14 days. The median incubation period for this virus is 5 days.

The onset of symptoms is gradual for COVID-19 and abrupt for the flu. The common symptoms for COVID-19 include:

  • Fever
  • Dry cough
  • Shortness of breath
  • Fatigue
  • Respiratory illnesses

Sometimes, people may also experience runny nose, nasal congestion, diarrhea, body aches, sore throat, headache, loss of appetite, chills, and loss of the sense of taste and smell.

Meanwhile, common flu symptoms include:

  • Cough
  • Fever
  • Fatigue
  • Body aches
  • Headache
  • Loss of appetite
  • Chills

Sometimes, the symptoms could include shortness of breath, runny nose, nasal congestion, diarrhea, sore throat, respiratory issues, loss of sense of taste and smell. The symptoms can vary from mild to severe, and they can result in pneumonia.

WHO estimates that about 15% of COVID-19 patients experience severe symptoms and 5% of cases become critical and require ventilator.

Transmission of Disease

Both COVID-19 and flu are spread through contact. Droplets containing the virus can also spread or infect through coughing or sneezing. That is why it is important to stay 6 feet away from anyone coughing or sneezing. Viruses can also survive on surfaces for days.

Treatment of Diseases

The flu has been around for quite a while; thus, there are several treatment options for flu. Most cases of flu, however, do not need medical intervention. The symptoms resolve on their own. Sometimes, an antiviral drug may be prescribed for the flu.

Currently, there is no vaccine or antiviral drug to treat COVID-19. Scientists all over the world are scrambling to get a vaccine or antiviral drug available to everyone as soon as possible. Although there is no approved drug or vaccine, there are ways to help treat the symptoms and minimize complications.

Prevention of Diseases

The best way to prevent the flu is to get a flu vaccination. Unfortunately, there is no vaccine for COVID-19. This is a novel coronavirus, and developing vaccines takes a lot of time and rigid testing. 

The best way to avoid getting the virus is to wash your hands thoroughly for about 20 minutes, avoid touching your face, observe social distancing when outside your house, and stay at home if you have nothing important to do outside the house.

The vaccine for COVID-19 may not be available right now, but flu vaccines are available in our store. Make sure to protect yourself and your family against the flu. We offer immunizations that are safe, affordable, and convenient. Contact Carolina Pharmacy today for inquiries about our vaccinations services.