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Differences of colds, SARS and influenza. This is important to know!

Symptoms of flu, colds and ARVI

Have they caught cold and it's SARS or the flu? Or maybe it's "swine flu" ?! If you learn to distinguish ARVI from the flu, you will always keep the situation under control, keep the nerve cells and protect yourself from serious health problems.

Cold - cooling the body or parts of the body, which is the cause of various diseases. In non-medical sources, cold is also called the disease caused by the cooling of the body. In everyday life, colds (colds) are often called infectious diseases:

  • Influenza, parainfluenza
  • Acute respiratory viral infection (ARVI)
  • Nasopharyngitis, pharyngitis
  • Laryngitis
  • Herpes simplex

Viral infections are not directly related to the cooling of the body, although supercooling itself can increase the body's susceptibility to infection and facilitate infection.

Symptoms: flu, cold and ARVI

In order not to be mistaken, it is vitally important to know what is the difference between conventional BLOOD, ARVI and FLU.

1. Deterioration of well-being at:

  • cold - gradual;
  • ARVI - fast;
  • flu - a sudden: a person does not note the exact moment of the disease.

2. Body temperature at:

  • colds - usually not higher than 37.5 ° C;
  • ARVI - always above 38 C °;
  • influenza - 39-40 C ° - it appears suddenly and remains high for 3-4 days.

3. Intoxication with:

  • cold - it's not there;
  • ARVI - is expressed in increased fatigue;
  • influenza - is, while it is even clearly pronounced and manifests a strong chill, unbearable headache, pain even with the movement of eyeballs, profuse sweating, photophobia, the presence of aches in muscles and joints.

4. Runny nose and nasal congestion with:

  • colds - appears in the first hours of the disease;
  • ARVI - occurs in the first days of the disease;
  • influenza - can appear as complications not earlier than 2-3 days of onset of the disease.

5. Sneezing at:

  • cold - accompanies the common cold;
  • ARVI - always accompanies it;
  • flu - most often absent.

6. Sore throat and its redness when:

  • cold - discomfort in the throat manifests itself on the 2nd day after hypothermia;
  • ARVI - appears immediately together with a cough and has a pronounced character;
  • influenza - appears on the 2nd day of the disease, besides, there is a cough caused by chest pain.

7. Discomfort in the eyes of:

  • a cold is absent;
  • ARVI - it happens, but rarely (if a bacterial infection has joined);
  • flu - often there is redness.

8. Headache with:

  • a cold does not appear;
  • ARVI - with complications of the disease (sinusitis, tonsillitis, bronchitis);
  • flu - a strong, which is difficult to endure without pain medication.

9. Increased fatigue with:

  • a cold is absent;
  • ARVI - can appear in a case when the heat keeps more than a day;
  • influenza - is and remains even for 2-3 weeks after the disease.

10. Insomnia with:

  • cold - it's not there;
  • ARVI - can occur due to high temperature;
  • influenza - is and remains even for 2-3 weeks after the disease.

What is the difference between a cold and flu?

What is the difference between a cold and flu? - Symptoms of flu, colds and colds

The word "cold" is a word for "cold", we call a lot of highly contagious viral diseases, which, as a rule, begin with inflammation of the nasal mucosa and pharynx. Most of them refer to acute respiratory viral infections.

Influenza is also ARVI , but it begins and proceeds more severely than other diseases of this group (parainfluenza, adenovirus and rhinovirus infection, etc.). With it, the most typical symptoms are manifested - temperature, cough, sore throat, and severe signs of an organism intoxication are added: chills, aches in the body, headache, often nausea and even blurred consciousness. The flu is indeed very dangerous complications. That's why it can not be equated with "ordinary cold" and carried on its feet.

Can I get sick from the cold?

Можно ли заболеть от холода? - Симптомы гриппа, простуды и ОРВИ

No. That you will certainly get sick, if you freeze, soak your feet, chill your head or eat ice cream on the street in winter - these are "grandmother's tales".

But the truth is that hypothermia will reduce your immune system, opening the way for viruses, and if they have already penetrated the body, the cold will speed up the infection and intensify unpleasant painful symptoms.

How not to catch a cold?

Как не заразиться простудой? - Симптомы гриппа, простуды и ОРВИ

To begin, we answer the reverse question: how do you get infected? The first way is to inhale the viral particles from a coughing or sneezing person. The second way is to touch the nose, mouth or eyes with unwashed hands after contact with a sick person, or public objects, which also live cold viruses.

Following simple logic, in order not to become infected, you need:

  • Avoid contact with patients, if possible, do not breathe common air with them, ventilate the premises;
  • Do not touch your face with dirty hands, wash them thoroughly with soap.

Will the medical mask protect?

Защитит ли медицинская маска? - Симптомы гриппа, простуды и ОРВИ

In fact, you need to wear the mask for the sick person - not to spread viruses to others. But it does not give a healthy guarantee of protection. Moreover, if you misuse it (and most do so), you can even speed up the infection.

To avoid this, observe the following rules:

  • Do not wear one mask for more than three hours, otherwise it will become an incubator of infection;
  • Do not stick out your nose, do not tug your mask, wear it as tightly as possible to your face;
  • Do not throw the used mask anywhere and keep it in an open bin - it's better to send it to the garbage disposal.

Does the flu vaccine work?

Правда ли работает вакцина от гриппа? - Симптомы гриппа, простуды и ОРВИ

The vaccine is the first and best way to protect yourself and your family from the flu, and it is absolutely necessary for pregnant women. But it is important to get vaccinated before the start of the traditional winter epidemic, that is, in the autumn, preferably before the end of October, and not be at this point a cold.

Why do some get sick even after the right vaccination? Because there are a lot of flu viruses and they quickly mutate, and the vaccine is created every year only against the most aggressive strains, which, according to WHO medical experts, are most likely to cause a seasonal epidemic. But even catching the flu of another strain or any other respiratory-viral infection, the vaccinated person will bear the disease more easily and quickly will return to normal.

How can I be treated if I still get it?

Как лечиться, если всё-таки заразился? - Симптомы гриппа, простуды и ОРВИ

No matter how trivial, peace and abundant drinking is the basis for the treatment of all ARVI, including influenza. In rest, the body completely focuses on fighting the infection, and drinking (tea, decoctions, warm milk, mineral water, berry fruit drinks) replenishes the loss of fluids, vitamins and trace elements and contributes to sputum discharge.

As for medicines, for colds, the WHO advises to limit oneself to a simple and safe minimum to alleviate symptoms: antipyretic / analgesic (paracetamol is one of the most harmless analgesics) and anti-edematous from the common cold.

The same is true for influenza if the symptoms are of moderate severity. However, if the disease starts harder, you need to call a doctor to prescribe antiviral drugs.

Are there effective remedies for colds?

Есть ли эффективные средства от простуды? - Симптомы гриппа, простуды и ОРВИ

Unfortunately, no , because there are too many viruses and they quickly mutate in the body, producing resistance to drugs. Based on this, think, do you really want to poison yourself or your child?

Here's what's important to know before you run to the pharmacy:

  • Antiviral drugs only work against influenza (and not other ARVI) and are most effective in the first 48 hours from the moment of the disease. Later they can benefit if they are correctly appointed by a doctor.
  • Antiviral, as well as cough suppressants, have a lot of side effects, which are especially dangerous for children under 12 years old. But adults are at risk when they are themselves pumped up with drugs, because they "have no time to get sick".
  • Most popular pharmacy products "for cold and flu" only temporarily relieve symptoms, but do not treat the disease itself and do not shorten its term.
  • Many drops and sprays in the nose to facilitate breathing dry and destroy the mucous membrane.
  • Antibiotics do not cure a cold, because they kill bacteria, not viruses. Taking them with ARVI and flu is a crime, because useful microbes are dying, and the body is even weaker. Antibiotics may be needed for some complications, but this should be determined by the doctor and prescribe dosage.

When to bring down the temperature?

Когда сбивать температуру? - Симптомы гриппа, простуды и ОРВИ

When it is above 38.5 degrees . Heat is the most important weapon of the body against infection, but after this mark it begins to threaten the body itself.

Too high temperature in combination with viral intoxication can be detrimental to internal organs. Especially dangerous is a strong fever for the cores and patients with thyroid problems.

How to treat a cold during pregnancy?

Как лечить простуду при беременности? - Симптомы гриппа, простуды и ОРВИ

The key principle: self-medication is unacceptable, including "grandmother's means," because there are many nuances and contraindications. Always consult a doctor. By the way, it is important not to confuse the first signs of cold and flu with the usual malaise during pregnancy, for this you need to monitor the temperature and condition of the throat.

Even the most seemingly innocuous ways that are suitable for everyone carry risks for pregnant women, especially in the first trimester, when the mother's body adapts to the new condition and the most important organs of the child are laid. For example, an abundant drink can cause edema, you can rinse your throat with chamomile, eucalyptus, sage, but many other decoctions and herbal preparations are dangerous, you can not soar your legs. The temperature should be brought down only after 38 degrees, but one should not be wrapped up and overheated.

Categorically contraindicated for future mothers most of the pharmacy drugs. Strictly forbidden aspirin. And the impact of the bulk of drugs on pregnant women is poorly studied, the data is regularly updated, and the instructions may be out of date. Therefore, once again: no self-treatment.

What can not be done while treating a child?

Чего нельзя делать при лечении ребёнка? - Симптомы гриппа, простуды и ОРВИ

According to pediatricians, "caring" adults make a lot of stupid mistakes, when they take to treat the child themselves, and as a result, he begins to get sick more often.

Here are some typical mistakes

Antibiotics for colds - Not only is this generally wrong (see clause 8), so thanks to this "therapy", the children's organism ceases to fight the disease on its own.

Rinse with vodka or vinegar - These "proven grandmother's remedies" dry the sensitive baby's skin, and if it's dry, then alcohol and acid are absorbed into the blood. To bring down the heat, the child should be wiped off with water at room temperature.

Raspberry with raspberries - Tea - a strong diuretic, raspberry - a powerful diaphoretic. Such a "double blow" will lead to dehydration and weaken the child's body if it has not previously received a sufficient amount of liquid. For this, the child needs to drink other drinks without a diuretic and diaphoretic effect.

Warmings and compresses - It is impossible to heat inflammations, thermal procedures only increase edema. Therefore, hot salt in a bag with a cold and a warm compress on the sore throat is harm, not good.

In general, if you are not a pro, then do not play doctor when your child is not sick for fun. And certainly call a real doctor when there are dangerous symptoms: rapid breathing or shortness of breath, no dropping temperature, convulsions .

How many times a year does it hurt to get sick?

Сколько раз в год нормально болеть? - Симптомы гриппа, простуды и ОРВИ

Adults "catch cold" on average 2-4 times a year, women - more often, probably because they are more in contact with children.

Children, in turn, get sick 6-10 times a year. Moreover, any normal child of preschool age should exactly so many times recover from acute respiratory infections and influenza - so immunity is included in its full-fledged work. Worse, if the child is not sick, it means that he has a weak immune response, says the chief pediatrician-hematologist of the Russian Ministry of Health, Alexander Rumyantsev.

Finally, people older than 60 years catch the cold on average 1 time a year and less often.

However, it is not so much the frequency that is important as the nature of the disease. Several times to transfer an easy cold - it is normal, and here twice to be ill with a long and heavy infection is an occasion to address to the immunologist.


Staying in the cold reduces the temperature of the human body (at a rate of 36.6 ° C). In air at 27 ° C, an unclothed person maintains its normal temperature, and in water, whose heat capacity is much higher, only at 32-36 ° C. But cooling causes the reaction of the body: involuntary - reducing the smooth muscles of the skin and blood vessels, reducing the heat loss of the body, plus - increased metabolism, increasing heat production, and voluntary - muscle movements, which also lead to increased heat production. In the drunken, sleeping, paralyzed this active reaction does not occur, because they are more easily exposed to the harmful effects of the common cold. But with a longer and more intense exposure to cold and a healthy body is not able to maintain a normal temperature. Because the cooling of the surface of the body causes the vessels to shrink, the blood flows to other areas, causing hot flashes to the internal organs, which can not be indifferent to them, especially if they already have painful changes; with heart disease, for example, or the fragility of blood vessels, such blood rushes can lead to bleeding. Even more sensitive are the internal organs to direct cooling, for example, a strong cooling of the peritoneum can directly lead to death.

An important way to prevent colds, including nasopharyngitis, is hardening. Hardening is to accustom the skin and its vessels to respond quickly to changes in temperature. In order not to cause harm to the body, it must be carried out gradually and cautiously. It is advisable to begin tempering from early childhood, after four weeks of life, gradually lowering the temperature of the bath for the newborn to a temperature consistent with the recommendations of specialists. After the bath follows a quick dousing of the trunk with slightly colder water and strong rubbing with a dry (terry) towel. From the second year you can be satisfied with one douche, which is done every morning. But the hardening has its limits. Thermal energy is produced from the food we receive; if we did not protect ourselves with clothes from excessive heat loss, we would, according to Jurgensen's apt expression, have only to warm our body.

They also carry out measures to destroy pathogens in their homes. For this purpose modern disinfection methods are also used: a wet kitchen towel for dishes is placed for 2 minutes in a microwave oven, all pathogenic microbes perish from high temperatures and steam. It is necessary to regularly clean, air the rooms, wash hands after visiting public places and before eating.

During epidemics should avoid long stays in public places, the outer sections of the nasal passages are smeared with oxolin ointment. As a natural antibiotic is used to eat garlic.

In the cool time it is useful to wear directly on the body not very dense woolen fabrics, which besides being highly elastic and, moreover, densely seated on the surface by thin, elastic hairs, so they do not fit as tightly to the body as the canvas, silk and other, but there is always an air space between them and the skin; Air, like a poor conductor of heat, mainly and delays heat transfer. Especially it is possible to recommend a wool for legs or foots. The feet have a larger surface compared to their mass, in addition, they lie furthest from the heart downwards, so the heat release from them is faster and penetrates deeper. It is necessary to avoid the soaking of the feet, which is so often the cause of the common cold, it is useful to wear quality, warm and waterproof footwear, preferably from genuine animal skin.

An important way to prevent colds is a healthy lifestyle: a full sleep (about 8 hours a day), charging, walking, eating a variety of foods containing vitamins, regular trips to nature from large industrial cities.


In the statistics of infectious diseases, influenza and SARS are 95%. The inability of modern medicine to still defeat these diseases is due to their ability to rapidly evolve. Most people have never learned to distinguish between flu and common cold, and this can lead to serious complications due to improper and timely treatment, which in some cases result in deaths.

Physicians unanimously say that the cause of death in most cases is the later application for qualified care. People, out of habit, try to lie back, feeling unwell and using the traditional set of familiar tablets and medicines for colds. But the flu gives complications and grows into pneumonia, which quickly "burns" a person in "seagulls".

Now in Ukraine, the flu rages, taking more and more human lives. Physicians unanimously say that the cause of death in most cases is the later application for qualified care. People, out of habit, try to lie back, feeling unwell and using the traditional set of familiar tablets and medicines for colds. But the flu gives complications and grows into pneumonia, which quickly "burns" a person in "seagulls".

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