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How to Tell if You Have RSV, Flu or COVID-19

How to Tell if You Have RSV, Flu or COVID-19

How to Tell if You Have RSV, Flu or COVID-19

By : Mister Kleen December 11, 2023 Comments off

With RSV season in full swing, and flu and COVID-19  cases on the rise, it can be difficult to tell what illness you are experiencing.  While they all share similar symptoms, subtle differences can help distinguish between them. 

Below is some general information that may help, but it is not a substitute for professional medical advice. If you’re unsure about your symptoms, consult your doctor for diagnosis and treatment. 

Some common symptoms of all RSV, flu, and COVID-19 include:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle aches
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • Shortness of breath


Distinguishing Symptoms:

WheezingCommon, especially in infantsUncommonUncommon
SneezingCommonCommonLess common
Loss of taste or smellRareRareCommon
Gastrointestinal symptoms (diarrhea, vomiting)UncommonPossibleOccasional
Eye rednessPossibleUncommonUncommon

Some other considerations:

  • Onset: RSV symptoms typically develop over 1-3 days, while flu and COVID symptoms may appear abruptly.
  • Duration: RSV symptoms usually last 1-2 weeks, while flu and COVID can last 1-3 weeks.
  • Severity: RSV can be severe in infants and older adults, while flu is generally more severe than COVID for healthy individuals.

You should seek medical attention if:

  • You experience difficulty breathing or severe chest pain.
  • You have a high fever that does not respond to medication.
  • You have persistent vomiting or diarrhea.
  • You have a weakened immune system and develop symptoms.
  • Your symptoms worsen or do not improve after a week.


The CDC offers more information on its website about:


If your facility experiences a viral outbreak, Mister Kleen can help by providing Total Facility Disinfection Services. Mister Kleen has been a leading provider of contract cleaning services to commercial and high security facilities since 1976. Our primary service area is the DC Metro region. We also provide a variety of interior and exterior specialty services. For more information, contact us at 703-719-6900.


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