Last Updated November 24th, 2022

Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19?

Do I Have the Flu

Are you worried that you might have the flu? This influenza quiz reveals if it’s the flu, the common cold, COVID-19, or else.

Do You Have the Flu?

If you have feverish chills, coughs, body aches, headaches, fatigue, and sore throat, it’s likely the flu (source). But if you sneeze, have a runny or stuffy nose, with no or mild fever, it’s probably the common cold (source).

The Flu The Common Cold
Enters deep into the lungs. Stays in the nose and sinus.
Has more severe symptoms. Often shows mild symptoms.
Often cooccurs with a fever. Usually ends with little to no fever.
Includes coughing and sore throat Includes runny nose and sneezing.

 

How to Know If It’s Flu, Not Cold or Covid?

Dr. John Torres advises that you assume it’s Covid unless proven otherwise. But in general, you could tell the difference between the flu, cold, and Covid by their severeness and symptoms:

If it’s a mild illness with little to no effect on your lungs—your breathing—it’s the cold. If it’s slightly more severe and enters your lungs—you cough a lot—it’s the flu. But if it affects your respiratory system and causes loss of smell and taste, it’s Covid.

However, distinguishing between flu, cold, coronavirus, and seasonal allergies requires clinical examination. So, please, avoid self-diagnosis.

What Is a Cold or Flu Symptom Checker?

A symptom checker for influenza, also known as the flu quiz, is an online self-report diagnostic checklist. Its goal is to determine if you have either of the viruses.

Suggested: If you have flu or cold symptoms, take our other quiz next. It’s called “What vitamins should I take?”

What Other Illnesses Look Like Flu?

Unfortunately, there are several indistinguishable viruses with parallel symptoms as the flu. The most common ones are the common cold, Covid variants—omicron, delta—seasonal allergies, and RSV.

But the flu is primarily mistaken for a cold, which has over 200 strains.

What to Do If You Have the Flu?

During the flu season, it’s best to stay home and rest. Especially if your symptoms are mild, over-the-counter treatments should be your priority. You must consult your doctor and take antiviral prescription flu medicines, such as Tamiflu (oseltamivir), Xofluza (baloxavir marboxil), Rapivab (peramivir), and Relenza (zanamivir).

Other than that, keep yourself warm, drink plenty of water, and avoid intense activities for a while—sleeping is an excellent choice to accelerate recovery.

Things to Know Before Taking the Flu Quiz

The number of people asking, “Do I have Influenza?” increases as the flu season starts. And the quiz comes in handy when you’re unsure what to do with the early symptoms. But you must keep a few things in mind before taking the test.

  • It’s not a clinical diagnosis.

No online quiz can diagnose you with the flu, the common cold, or Covid. At best, they can identify which illness seems more probable. So, whatever you do, please do not replace an online test with a clinical examination.

  • You should avoid self-prescription.

No matter the results, you must not self-prescribe. Taking the wrong medication can only worsen your situation and lead to irrecoverable health issues. Please, consult your doctor before taking any medicines.

  • The test accuracy depends on your report.

The flu quiz is a self-report. In other words, your description of the symptoms directly affects the results. For a more reliable answer, pick the option closest to your symptoms.

Disclaimer

The influenza quiz, AKA do I have the flu test, is an educational self-assessment tool. It’s not meant to replace a clinical examination and does not prescribe any medication.

Questions of the quiz

  • Question 1

    Which one is true about your throat?

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 1
    • My throat is not sore at all

    • My throat is slightly sore

    • My throat is very sore

    • My throat hurts when I swallow

  • Question 2

    What’s your energy level?

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 2
    • Normal

    • Lower than usual

    • I feel abnormally tired

    • My energy is so low that I can’t move

  • Question 3

    Do you feel fatigued? Describe your feeling.

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 3
    • No, not really.

    • Yes, I feel slightly tired.

    • Yes, I have body aches.

    • Yes, I can’t move my arms or legs.

  • Question 4

    Do you cough?

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 4
    • No, not really

    • I have mild and random coughs

    • Yes, I cough a lot.

    • Yes, I cough so much that I can’t breathe.

  • Question 5

    Do you sneeze?

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 5
    • No, not really.

    • Yes, a lot.

    • Only a few times per day.

    • I don’t sneeze, but I can’t stop coughing.

  • Question 6

    Do you have a runny or stuffy nose?

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 6
    • Neither

    • Runny nose

    • Stuffy nose

    • None of them. But I can’t smell anything.

  • Question 7

    Do you have headaches?

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 7
    • No, not really

    • Yes, but my headaches are mild.

    • Yes, it’s getting worse.

    • Yes, my headaches are unbearable.

  • Question 8

    Do you have body aches?

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 8
    • No, not really.

    • Yes, but it’s mild.

    • Yes, my muscles hurt.

    • Yes, the pain is excruciating.

  • Question 9

    Can you smell and taste?

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 9
    • Yes, my sense of smell and taste works just fine.

    • Yes, but my sense of smell has decreased.

    • Yes, but my sense of taste has decreased.

    • No, I can neither smell nor taste anything.

  • Question 10

    Do you experience wheezing? (Noisy breathing).

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 10
    • No, not at all.

    • Maybe. I’m not sure.

    • Yes, but it seems like it’s going away.

    • Yes, I feel like I can’t breathe.

  • Question 11

    Which one describes your breathing?

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 11
    • My breathing is fine.

    • I feel mild chest pain when breathing.

    • I feel a mild shortage of breath.

    • I feel an extreme shortage of breath and chest pain.

  • Question 12

    When did you notice the initial symptoms?

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 12
    • A few days ago. But most of them are gone now.

    • A week ago. But it seems like I’m getting better.

    • A few days ago. But it’s getting worse.

    • A week or two ago. But it’s suddenly getting worse.

  • Question 13

    How fast did the illness cause you to feel fatigued?

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 13
    • It started fast, but I got better quickly.

    • I felt fatigued for the first few days.

    • I’ve been feeling fatigued for the past three days or so.

    • I’ve been feeling extremely fatigued for the past week or so.

  • Question 14

    Do you experience night sweats?

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 14
    • No, not at all.

    • I did when I had a fever

    • No, but I sweat more than usual.

    • Yes, I sweat a lot at night.

  • Question 15

    How strong or painful are your coughs? (5 means extremely painful).

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 15
    • 0-1

    • 2-3

    • 4

    • 5

  • Question 16

    Do you have chest pain? How bad is it?

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 16
    • No, not at all.

    • Yes, it’s mild

    • Yes, it’s more than usual.

    • Yes, it’s unbearable.

  • Question 17

    Do you have difficulty moving or talking?

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 17
    • No, I don’t.

    • Not really. I’m just a bit fatigued.

    • Yes, I feel dizzy and weak.

    • Yes, I feel like I can’t move any part of my body.

  • Question 18

    When did you take your flu shot?

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 18
    • A few months ago.

    • A few weeks ago.

    • A few days ago.

    • I haven’t taken it yet.

  • Question 19

    Is anyone else feeling ill in your house? What are their symptoms like?

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 19
    • No, no one else is feeling ill.

    • Yes, their symptoms are milder than mine.

    • Yes, they have the exact same symptoms.

    • Yes, but their symptoms are totally different.

  • Question 20

    Final question: How long have you been having the symptoms?

    Quiz: Do I Have the Flu or a Cold, or Maybe COVID-19? 20
    • One day

    • Two days

    • Three days

    • A week or longer

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