Home News How to identify if it’s Covid 19 or Flu?

How to identify if it’s Covid 19 or Flu?


Not many people know that the flu season and COVID season coincide. There is a surge in cases at the same time of the year (between December and February) when people experience symptoms that could be a sign of either of the two. This time of the year is both COVID and flu season. People with an active lifestyle are likely to catch both flu and COVID at some point during this season. 

There are several similarities and differences between COVID-19 and the flu and it is easy to get confused. However, even though both have a lot in common in terms of symptoms, they are not identical. So, what’s the best way to tell them apart then? Before you wonder, ‘how can I get covid test near me?’ you must know the difference between flu and COVID. 

Flu or COVID-19: Know the difference

COVID and flu both are respiratory disorders and cases of both these infections tend to rise seasonally. Once a person is affected by either, it can cause downtime for at least a week. In case you have any pre-existing conditions, both flu and COVID may be exacerbated. A prevention strategy for both flu and COVID includes avoiding potential exposure in public and getting vaccinated. You can get a vaccine for both flu and COVID. While they look closely similar, let’s see how they differ from each other. 

Flu and COVID are caused by different pathogens and both affect the human system in different ways. While flu or influenza is a respiratory illness that may not lead to any complications, COVID-19 is a corona virus caused by the pathogen SARS-CoV-2 that can lead to a severe infection while Flu is caused by infection with a flu virus (influenza viruses).

It is common to compare your symptoms against the list of symptoms for both diseases. With several common symptoms, it is easy to get confused as you try to find out what exactly are you dealing with. CDC has outlined the primary differences between COVID and flu that can help you determine prima facie which of the two you are suffering from. 

COVID-19 Symptoms vs. Flu Symptoms

The following symptoms are common for both COVID-19 and flu:

  • Coughing
  • Fatigue
  • Shortness of breath
  • A sore throat
  • Body aches and headaches
  • Loss of taste and smell

What’s The Difference between COVID-19 and the Flu?

If you have any digestive issues like diarrhea and vomiting, the chances of you having caught the flu virus are more. People with flu may also experience an unusual change in their sense of taste and smell. This is because they’re congested. However, it is also one of the key symptoms of COVID. 

Compared to flu, COVID-19 spreads easily and can cause more severe symptoms in some people. With COVID-19, people affected can take longer before they show symptoms, and they can remain contagious for longer periods. It is difficult to tell the difference between flu and COVID-19 simply by looking at the symptoms because of the similarities. This is why testing is required to confirm a diagnosis and to reveal if someone has both COVID and the flu at the same time. You can easily get COVID test in Delhi to get clarity. 

Allergies with similar symptoms

Another ailment that seems to surge during peak flu and COVID season is allergies. People who are prone to allergies are generally of the seasonal patterns of their allergy but with a rise in flu and COVID cases, it is easy to confuse allergy symptoms with those of COVID or the flu. Allergies are not caused by pathogens and this makes them different. They trigger an overreaction of the immune system, and this causes symptoms like coughing, sneezing, itchy eyes, and a runny nose, all common allergy symptoms. Allergies feel more like having a common cold and not the flu or COVID-19. If you are suffering from asthma or any other breathing condition, it’s easy to confuse allergies with COVID or the flu. 

When you are feeling under the weather

If you are experiencing symptoms then a combination of COVID and flu testing is used as an effective way to diagnose if you have flu or COVID. Both of these conditions are treatable and a patient can get well soon with the right care and medication. The effects of COVID may be more pronounced for patients with co-morbidities but patients who are otherwise reasonably healthy can recover with the right soon treatment. They need to eat right, stay hydrated, and get plenty of rest and sleep.

Get tested at home

If you have any doubts, the ideal way out is to get yourself tested and get the actual answer. Getting tested for both the flu and COVID simultaneously is the ideal way to get a correct diagnosis. You can get a COVID test at home Delhi from Orange Health. You can get tested from the comfort of your home. All you need to do is book an RT PCR test through Orange Health’s website. The eMedic will collect your sample within 60 minutes of booking the test from your home, office or any location you prefer. The sample will be taken to the NABL accredited and ICMR-approved lab for testing. Your reports will be shared with you within 9 hours over WhatsApp and you can also view the same on Orange Health’s app.