According to Health Canada’s latest weekly influenza report – which examined cases of influenza from April 17 to May 7 – since the beginning of April, influenza detections have increased sharply and reached seasonal thresholds.
Influenza, colds, seasonal allergies and COVID-19. May is all over the place with sunshine and warmth like a runny nose and sore throat with blooming flowers and bee pollination.
What makes people uncomfortable is how symptoms directly compare to COVID-19 and how best to distinguish signs of allergy from signs of the coronavirus.
But what about colds and flu? According to Health Canada’s latest weekly influenza report – which examined cases of influenza from April 17 to May 7 – since the beginning of April, influenza detections have increased sharply and reached seasonal thresholds.
Health Canada says nearly 5,000 lab cases of influenza were detected in the country in the weeks mentioned. Among the cases with exact age data, the majority were individuals under 45 years of age.
Health Canada notes that there are increases in flu-like illness and hospitalizations right now, adding that high flu activity — 249 flu-related hospital admissions — has occurred over the past few weeks.
Additional statistics show that the percentage of Canadians who reported “influenza-like illness (ILI) to doctors” was 2.1 percent.
“The percentage of visits to suspected influenza cases has exceeded typical pre-pandemic levels for this time of year,” Health Canada says, adding that IMPACT has seen a “sharp increase” in influenza-related hospitalizations among children.
This data appears to be in line with what Chicago has reported in recent days. According to city data, there were about 300 known cases of influenza per week throughout April and through the first part of May. The city uses data on test results reported by several Chicago hospital laboratories.
By comparison, there were only a dozen cases per week for most of January and February.
Health Canada officials say the detection of seasonal respiratory viruses has also increased since February 2022, with influenza accounting for most of the growth in recent weeks. Health Canada says the activity of most respiratory viruses is at or below expected levels for this time of year.
Public Health Canada wrote: “Influenza is the most common seasonal respiratory virus detected in Canada as the third week of influenza season concludes.”
“[The] The activity of other respiratory viruses is low; However, seasonal human coronavirus activity (178 detected; 4.8 percent positive) remains slightly above expected levels.
Meanwhile, Health Canada data shows that positivity for the Rhinovirus – the main cause of the common cold – has risen slightly compared to previous weeks, including higher detection in Ontario than in other provinces.
Ontario reported 11 new deaths linked to COVID-19 today. The county says that number includes deaths from previous days recorded while cleaning up the data. There are 1,345 people in hospital with the virus today, up from 1,122.
Comparing flu and cold symptoms to COVID-19: What you need to know
The Mayo Clinic notes that COVID-19, colds, seasonal allergies and influenza have many similar signs and symptoms.
Health officials continue to stress that the most common symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, cough and fatigue.
sign of illness
|Runny or stuffy nose||user||user|
|Nausea or vomiting||sometimes||never|
|New loss of sense of taste or smell||Usually (early – often without a runny or stuffy nose)||Sometimes (especially with a stuffy nose)|
Symptoms of COVID-19 usually appear 2 to 14 days After exposure, while signs of the common cold begin to appear in general From one to three days After exposure to a virus that causes the common cold.
Most healthy people recover from colds in Three to ten daysalthough some colds may last for two or three weeks.
The flu works differently. Compared to COVID-19, it is less transmissible, and COVID-19 can take longer before people develop symptoms. People can remain infectious for longer periods of time.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that you can’t distinguish between the flu and COVID-19 just by looking at the symptoms because they show some of the same signs.
Usually, a person may experience flu-like symptoms anywhere From one to four days after injury. Most people with influenza are contagious for about a day before they develop symptoms, while older children and adults appear to be most contagious during the first three to four days of their illness.
Most people with the flu recover on their own within a few days to two weeks.
sign of illness
|Runny or stuffy nose||user||user|
|fever||user||Usually – not always|
|Nausea or vomiting||sometimes||Sometimes (more common in children)|
|Diarrhea||sometimes||Sometimes (more common in children)|
|Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing||user||user|
|New loss of taste or smell||Usually (early – often without a runny or stuffy nose)||Scarcely|