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Flu and Cold Prevention

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In addition to cleaning your hands, covering your cough and getting your flu vaccine, you should:

Clean surfaces that could transfer germs such as:

  • Door knobs.
  • Toys.
  • Light switches.
  • Telephones.

This is especially important when someone in the house has a cold.

During an illness

If you have a fever and cough:

  • Minimize your contact with others.
  • Cough or sneeze in a tissue, dispose of it carefully, then clean your hands either with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Call your doctor or a health service for advice.

If a family member has a fever and cough:

  • Don’t share food, towels, toothbrushes or their holders, other items that could transfer germs.
  • Remain at least one metre away as much as possible.
  • Clean your hands before eating, after coughing or sneezing or after helping your child blow his/her nose.
  • Call a doctor or a health service for advice, if needed.

You can speak to a registered nurse 24 hours a day, seven days a week at Telehealth Ontario at 1-866-797-0000

Adapted from Ottawa-Carlton Health Unit

Is It a Cold or the Flu?




Fever Rare Fever Rare Characteristics, high (102-
104°); lasts 3-4 days
Headache Rare Prominent
General Aches, Pains Slight Usual; often severe
Fatigue, Weakness Quite mild Can last up to 2-3 weeks
Extreme Exhaustion Never Early and prominent
Stuffy Nose Common Sometimes
Sneezing Usual Sometimes
Sore Throat Common Sometimes
Chest Discomfort, Cough Mild to moderate; hacking cough Common; can become severe
Complications Sinus congestion or earache Bronchitis, pneumonia; can be life-threatening
Prevention None Annual vaccination; oseltamivir (antiviral drugs)
Treatment Only temporary relief of symptoms Oseltamivir within 24-48 hours after onset of symptoms

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