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Cold & Flu Learning Center

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Different viruses are behind the cold and flu. If you experience fever, headache and fatigue, you probably have the flu, since those symptoms rarely appear with colds. Both colds and the flu usually run their course in a week. But older adults are more susceptible to serious complications from the flu, including pneumonia. Learn how to keep from getting sick and feel better faster if you do become ill. 

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Cold

Colds can occur at any time of year, but are common during the winter, when people are indoors and exposed to others who are sick. You can catch a cold by coming into contact with someone who has the virus or touching a contaminated surface and then touching your face. Fortunately, most colds clear up within a week, and over-the-counter cold medicines — and home remedies like chicken soup — often provide relief.  Read

Flu

You can catch the virus that causes influenza, or the flu, by coming into contact with a sick person or touching surfaces that carry the virus. The flu usually clears up within 7-10 days, but older adults and people with certain health conditions, including diabetes and heart disease, are at higher risk for complications. Learn about the steps you can take to keep the flu at bay.  Read

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