The flu causes a fever, body aches, a headache, a dry cough, and a sore or dry throat. You will probably feel tired and less hungry than usual. The symptoms usually are the worst for the first 3 or 4 days. But it can take 1 to 2 weeks to get completely better.
It typically takes 1 to 4 days to get symptoms of the flu after you have been around someone who has the virus. Most people get better without problems. But sometimes the flu can lead to a bacterial infection, such as an ear infection, a sinus infection, or bronchitis. Less often, the flu may cause a more serious problem, such as pneumonia.
Certain people are at higher risk of problems from the flu. They include young children, pregnant women, older adults, and people with long-term illnesses or with impaired immune systems that make it hard to fight infection.
Can the Flu be prevented?
You can help prevent the flu by getting the flu vaccine every year. It’s best to get the vaccine as soon as it’s available.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that everyone 6 months old and older should get a flu vaccine. The vaccine is especially important for people who are at higher risk of problems from the flu, including:
- Young children.
- Adults ages 50 and older.
- Adults and children who have long-term health problems or an impaired immune system.
- Women who will be pregnant during the flu season.
- Health care workers and anyone who lives or works with a person who is at higher risk of problems from the flu.