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Cold or Flu?

It is getting to be that time of year again.  Yes, it is cold and flu season...

How can you determine whether your child has a cold or the flu? The symptoms can be very similar, but flu symptoms are typically much more intense and severe. Symptoms for each are below: 


  • runny or stuffy nose
  • low or no fever
  • mild headache
  • mild fatigue (or tiredness)
  • mild cough
  • sore throat


  • runny or stuffy nose
  • high fever that comes on quickly (over 101.0 degrees)
  • severe headache
  • extreme fatigue (tiredness)
  • cough (sometimes severe with breathing difficulty)
  • sore throat
  • chills
  • body aches

If your child exhibits symptoms of the flu, it is very important to keep them home from school. If a fever over 101.0 last for 24 hours, have your child seen by a doctor. If your child has breathing difficulty, is not able to drink fluids, appears excessively tired, or is excessively irritable with the above symptoms, take your child to the ER. If the doctor determines that your child has the flu, there is medication that the doctor can prescribe to decrease the severity and duration of the illness.

FYI---it is not too late to get your flu shot! And, be sure to practice good hand-washing technique to decrease the risk of catching a cold or flu.

Please remember, your child must be fever-free (with no fever-reducing medication) for 24 hours before returning to school!

Credit:  CDC. http://cdc.gov/flu


Suzanne Funk

Clinic Nurse


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