Influenza is one of the most common contagious illnesses in the world! Because of this, chances are you have at least had it or been exposed to it already this year. Since it is such a common illness, it is important to understand what symptoms are associated with the flu.

If you haven’t gotten your flu shot yet, there is still time! Getting vaccinated at any point during the season can offer you protection. In addition to the shot, our AFC Urgent Care Chattanooga team explains what symptoms to watch for regarding the flu below.

Will the Flu Make Me Really Sick?

You can contract the flu in a variety of ways, just like any other viral illness. It can spread through an uncovered cough or sneeze or through contact with infected individuals. If the flu virus infects you, you will start to experience your symptoms relatively quickly.

While your symptoms may start out with a runny nose or minor sore throat, they will probably start to get worse as the infection sets in. Unlike the common cold, the onset of the flu is almost immediate and you can expect to feel pretty sick right away.

Seasonal Flu Symptoms

  • Fever
  • Runny nose/congestion
  • Sore throat
  • Cough
  • Muscle or body aches

Is There a Treatment for the Flu?

We hope you feel better soon! Like any other viral illness, the most common course of treatment is focused on symptom management as your body works to overcome the infection. With rest, OTC medication and plenty of fluids, you should start to feel better in about a week or so.

If you are at risk of a severe flu complication, your doctor may be able to prescribe an antiviral drug to help lessen your symptoms. These antiviral drugs work the best when prescribed right at the onset of your symptoms, so don’t wait if you are hoping to utilize this option! Aim to visit with your care team within one to two days after your flu symptoms appear.

Simple Foods to Eat While You Recover

  • Broth, whether by itself or in a soup
  • Yogurt
  • Vitamin C-rich foods like oranges or broccoli
  • Oatmeal

If you are wondering if your recent illness is the flu, come see us at AFC Urgent Care Chattanooga for a rapid test.