The flu (influenza) is a contagious respiratory illness that can cause mild to severe symptoms. It can infect the nose, throat, and in some cases, the lungs too. Many people can recover from the flu in about a week but it can also have life-threatening complications for others. Healthline explains, “The risk of complications increases if you’re over the age of 65.” This is why learning about the symptoms, causes, and treatment is so important.
Seniors have a greater risk of developing complications because as we age, our immune system naturally weakens. This can make it harder for our bodies to fight off a virus. That said, recognizing the risk factors for the flu and taking preventative measures will help set you up for success when the flu season starts. Here is what seniors should know about the flu.
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Common Flu Symptoms
Flu symptoms can start just one to four days after exposure to the virus. While flu symptoms can be similar to a cold, the common cold is usually much milder and its symptoms typically come more gradually than the flu.
Some common symptoms of the flu include a runny nose, congestion, a sore throat, and coughing. You may also experience fever, body aches, chills, weakness, fatigue, headache, and chest discomfort.