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How Common is the Flu?

How Common is the Flu?


Woman getting a flu shot

The flu—or influenza—is a highly contagious viral infection that impacts millions of Americans every year during flu season, which typically runs from October to March. According the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), between 9.3 million and 45 million people in the United States have become sick with the flu each year since 2010. Additionally, between 140,000 and 810,000 hospitalizations occur annually due to the flu, as well as 12,000 to 61,000 deaths.

How Do Flu Symptoms Differ From COVID-19?

The flu and COVID-19 share many of the same symptoms, including fever, chills, fatigue, cough, sore throat, and muscle aches. However, COVID-19 is more likely to cause loss of taste and smell, and it typically results in a more severe, persistent cough than the flu.

It’s important to note that only a healthcare professional with clinical testing capabilities can distinguish the flu from COVID-19. If you are displaying possible symptoms of the flu or COVID-19, it’s a good idea to seek professional medical guidance about your next steps.

Flu Shots, Testing & More at Fast Track Urgent Care

Unquestionably, the best way to protect yourself and your loved ones from the flu is to receive an annual flu shot. Fast Track Urgent Care is pleased to offer flu shots to adults and children at our clean and comfortable immediate care centers in Silver Spring and Kensington. We also offer flu testing, COVID-19 testing, and treatment for viral infections. Stop by today, or chat with us virtually through our convenient telemedicine services.