The Flu? No big deal ... Or is it?
Actually, influenza – commonly called the "flu" – can be a pretty serious illness.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, compared with other viral respiratory infections – such as the common cold – infection from the "flu" often causes a more severe illness.
In an average year, influenza is associated with about 36,000 deaths nationwide and many more hospitalizations.
Even less serious cases of influenza can keep individuals – both young and old – from work and school for up to several days.
When should I get my flu shot?
The best time to get a flu shot is in October or November. The flu season usually peaks between January and March.
Will a flu vaccine prevent stomach flu?
The flu is a respiratory illness. You cannot have a "stomach flu." Symptoms such as nausea, diarrhea and vomiting are not common flu symptoms, except in very young children.
How to tell if you have the cold or the flu:
If you have the flu:
Source: Centers for Disease Control