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 Is The Coronavirus Disease More Severe Than The Flu?




Coronavirus is a new virus that has emerged in December 2019. It causes a respiratory illness called COVID-19. The symptoms vary according to the severity of the disease.

 Is The Coronavirus Disease More Severe Than The Flu?

COVID-19 shares many similarities with the seasonal flu but there are many differences between the two that make coronavirus more severe than flu. Peruse to find out how exactly COVID-19 differs from flu.




Incubation period 1 to 4 days 1 to 14 days
Most common symptoms
  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Chills
  • Body pain
  • Fatigue
  • Headache
  • Runny nose
  • Sore throat
  • Fever
  • Dry cough
  • Tiredness
Less common symptoms
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Sore throat
  • Diarrhea
  • Body pain
  • Conjunctivitis
  • Headache
  • Loss of taste or smell
  • Rashes on the skin
Rate of transmission Less then COVID More than flu
The familiarity of the immune system to the virus Familiar with the virus Unfamiliar with the virus, hence requires more time and effort to fight it off
Hospitalization Not required in most cases Required in most cases
Mortality rate Very low High
Treatments currently available Vaccines and antiviral medications No medications available at present

Both flu and COVID-19 are no fun to deal with but it is important to understand why coronavirus is deadlier and more severe than seasonal flu. The symptoms exhibited are similar in many ways in both these viruses. However, the severity and incubation period varies widely.

Incubation period

In the case of flu, symptoms appear between 1 to 4 days after being infected by the virus whereas in the case of COVID-19, symptoms appear anytime between 1 to 14 days. Because of this, the number of people affected tends to be more in the case of COVID-19 as you just don’t know if you have the disease or not until 14 days after being infected. The incubation period can also vary from individual to individual.


The most common symptoms seen in flu include fever, cough, chills, body pain, fatigue, headache, runny nose, and sore throat. The symptoms seen in an individual affected by the coronavirus are pretty much the same except for a few: dry cough along with fever and tiredness. Also, coronavirus exhibits symptoms that are not commonly seen such as diarrhea, headache, body pain, etc.

Transmission rate

Flu or coronavirus, it can easily transmit from one person to another through droplets and contaminated objects. However, the rate of transmission is found to be higher in the case of coronavirus.

Treatment options

Flu is definitely not new to our immune system. Our body has the antibodies necessary to overcome the seasonal flu. But coronavirus is a stranger to our immune system. Therefore, it requires more time and effort to efficiently fight off the virus. The sad part is, most people are not able to effectively eliminate the virus.

Seasonal flu has a number of medications available like antiviral medications and vaccines. But currently, no medicines that can destroy coronavirus have been discovered. This is why it is mandatory to do whatever we can to stop the spread of coronavirus.

If you’re infected, here are the things you should follow:

  • Isolate yourself and contact medical experts

Call the authorities immediately to avoid further spread of the virus. Isolate yourself and get your family members or with whoever you’ve been in contact checked to be on the safer side.

  • Check your symptoms

Keep monitoring your symptoms to determine whether you need to be hospitalized. If the symptoms are mild, isolate yourself and take appropriate measures.

  • Wear a mask

This is to prevent transmission via droplets through coughing and sneezing.

  • Get tested

It is important to confirm the presence of the virus so that you can choose the right treatment options that are available currently.

But even if you do not show any kind of symptoms, it is important to take adequate measures to keep yourself and those around you safe and free from the virus. Here are a few tips that one must follow in these grim times:

  • Wash hands regularly: It is important to wash your hands regularly and properly. Follow the WHO guidelines to clean every nook of your hand
  • Keep yourself clean: Take a shower every day and disinfect yourself.
  • Avoid touching the face: Virus can be transmitted if you touch your face since there is a possibility for your hand to come in contact with the infection. Hence, avoid touching the eye, nose, and mouth.
  • Maintain social distancing: Stay at least 6 feet away from other people.
  • Always wear a mask: This is very important to follow when you go out or if any of your family members are affected
  • Work from home, if possible
  • Avoid crowded places and gatherings


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