Getting sick with a cold or the flu is no fun. The sneezing, coughing, body aches, headache, and stuffiness can make you feel lousy for a few days or more. The good news is you can usually treat the symptoms at home with over-the-counter medicines and plenty of rest. But there are times when you may need more than a box of tissues and your favorite spot on the couch. Sometimes colds and flus can lead to more serious illnesses like pneumonia. Or what you think is a cold or the flu is really something else, like allergies or a more serious infection. In these cases, it’s best to call your doctor. You may need medical care or a different type of treatment.
Here’s a list of symptoms you shouldn’t ignore. Call your doctor if you have:
Another sign you may need medical care is if extra rest doesn’t seem to be working. Call your doctor if you:
Fortunately, most colds and flus get better on their own. But don’t hesitate to call your doctor if you’re worried about your symptoms or have any questions.
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