COVID-19: How Does it Differ From the Flu or a Cold? - First Care Clinics

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COVID-19: How Does it Differ From the Flu or a Cold?

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COVID-19: How Does it Differ From the Flu or a Cold?
COVID-19: How Does it Differ From the Flu or a Cold?

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The coronavirus pandemic has taken our world by storm. The extent to which it has affected and is affecting everyone’s life individually has caught nearly everyone by surprise. Since this is the main topic in the media, facts tend to get skewed and twisted, so let’s get the facts straight and then discuss how we can spot the difference between COVID-19, the flu, and a cold.

“Coronavirus” is actually a name for a family of multiple virus strains. COVID-19 is a type of coronavirus that has just recently been discovered and named. It originated in Wuhan, China, and it spreads very easily just like the flu and some colds do. Since this is such a newly introduced virus to scientists all across the world, not much research has been conducted to determine exactly how COVID-19 originated. According to Healthline, “These cases have since been linked to a market selling seafood and poultry. Though the virus likely evolved from an animal source, its exact source is unknown.” 

Symptoms of this current coronavirus seem to align with the flu or a cold, but there are some symptoms that set each apart. Here are a few symptoms that set each of the three apart from each other. This is NOT a complete list of symptoms. 


Cold Flu COVID-19
Sneezing Common Very Rare Very Rare
Stuffy Nose Common Sometimes Rare
Shortness of Breath Very Rare Very Rare Sometimes
Fever Rare Common Common
Cough Occasional Common (dry) Common (dry)


It is good to understand the differences, so you do not go to a doctor’s office or an emergency room with mild symptoms. If you did not have COVID-19, you would be unnecessarily putting yourself at risk of contracting the virus. On the other hand, if you did have COVID-19, you would be putting others at risk. If you feel fairly certain you have COVID-19 and want to be tested, drive-thru testing centers are the best way to go about testing. It limits the spread and exposure of the virus. 

At First Care Clinics, we are doing everything we can to keep our patients safe. We ask that you call our office first if you are experiencing symptoms similar to COVID-19 so that we can ensure your safety and our staff’s safety. Visit our website to find a First Care Clinic near you. 

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