GP shares 'key difference' between summer flu and Covid to look out for

GP Dr Johannes Uys – based at Broadgate General Practice – said noting specific symptoms can distinguish between Covid and flu.

Symptoms of Covid can include fever, cough, shortness of breath, loss of taste or smell, fatigue and body aches.

Summer flu can also cause fever, cough, fatigue and body aches, Dr Uys pointed out.

He told “The key difference between flu and Covid symptoms is a loss of taste or smell, which is more common in Covid cases.”

Dr Uys added: “Flu symptoms often come on suddenly, whereas Covid symptoms can develop gradually.”

The duration of illness might also vary, said Dr Uys, with Covid symptoms typically lasting for a fortnight.

“Summer flu symptoms usually last for about a week,” Dr Uys added for comparison.

In terms of the dominating strain of Covid at present, known as Eris, research is ongoing to determine if the symptoms are similar to that of previous strains.

“Generally, symptoms of COVID-19 variants are similar to the original virus,” said Dr Uys.

Whatever infection you may have, whether it be Covid or flu, there is a similarity in how to recover.

Rest and hydration are two elements that can help when you’re feeling under the weather.

Additional measures include over-the-counter medications and a healthy diet to help manage the infection.

Yet, it’s advisable to monitor symptoms in case they continuously worsen or persist for a long time, which would require medical advice.

When you are ill with Covid or the flu, you can spread the infection to others who are nearby.

The Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says “most experts think that flu viruses spread mainly by droplets made when people with flu cough, sneeze, or talk”.

Covid spreads “when an infected person breathes out droplets and very small particles that contain the virus”.

To help protect others from illness, it’s advisable to stay at home when recovering from the flu or Covid.