What are the signs and symptoms of influenza?
- Symptoms develop 1 to 3 days after a person has become infected.
- Influenza has a sudden onset with fever, headache, muscle aches, joint pain, sore throat, tiredness and cough.
- Fever may not be prominent in children or the elderly.
- Nausea, vomiting and diarrhea are not common in adults but may occur in children.
- Influenza is more severe than the common cold (see table below).
- In severe cases, influenza may result in pneumonia, bronchitis, kidney or heart failure.
- Most symptoms resolve in 5 to 7 days, but cough and fatigue can last 2 weeks or more.
What if my child or I have symptoms?
- Do not attend daycare, school, place of work, social gathering places (e.g., coffee shop) or volunteer activities while symptoms are present.
- If you are a healthcare worker, do not attend work for 5 days after onset of symptoms.
Common Cold vs. Influenza
|Fever||Rare (mild)||Common 39 - 40 degrees celcius (sudden onset)|
|Aches and pains||Occasional (mild)||Common (often severe)|
|Fatigue/weakness||Occasional (mild)||Common (severe)|
|Headache||Rare except with sinus congestion||Common (can be severe)|
|Sore throat||Common||Occassional (mild)|
|Cough||Common (mild to moderate)||Common (can be severe)|
|Chest discomfort||Occasional (mild to moderate)||Common (can become severe)|