Colds are usually associated with a sore throat and runny nose and are much more common than the flu. Although many of the symptoms overlap, the flu is much more serious than a cold.
The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses. It usually comes on suddenly and people often experience fever, chills, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches, and fatigue. Some people may even experience vomiting and diarrhea.
Senior citizens, young children, and people with certain health conditions are at high risk for serious flu complications, including death. The best way to prevent the flu is by getting vaccinated every year.
Every year, scientists create a new vaccine based on research showing which influenza viruses will be the most common. The vaccine typically includes an influenza A (H1N1) virus, an influenza A (H3N2) virus, and one or two influenza B viruses.
The flu shot contains an inactive version of the virus meant to protect you from the flu and is most commonly given as an injection.
Some minor side effects that could occur are:
Almost all people who receive influenza vaccine have no serious problems from it.
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