What Are Mild Flu-Like Symptoms?

Feverish woman lying under blanket
A woman resting on the sofa with a thermometer in her hand. (Image: KatarzynaBialasiewicz/iStock/Getty Images)

Flu-like symptoms is a general medical term used to describe a complex—but usually mild—set of symptoms that can develop due to infection, disease or medication use. The development of mild flu-like symptoms can occur suddenly and is most commonly associated with infection caused by the influenza (flu) virus.

Fever and Chills

One of the most common mild flu-like symptoms is fever. In healthy people, the average body temperature is 98.6°F. When a foreign substance, such as a virus or bacteria, abnormally enters your body, your immune system sends signals throughout your body, telling it to increase in temperature. A fever helps prevent the spread of viruses or bacteria throughout your body because these pathogens have difficulty multiplying at higher temperatures. Mild flu-like symptoms of fever are typically low-grade—approximately 101°F according to doctors at The Mayo Clinic.

Fatigue

If you have an infection, your immune system utilizes your energy to help fight off this unwelcome invader. When this occurs, your normal energy stores are depleted, causing mild flu-like symptoms of fatigue or tiredness. Mild flu-like symptoms of fatigue can cause you to take frequent naps throughout the day or may make it difficult for you to complete your normal daily tasks.

Nasal Congestion

You can experience nasal congestion as an effect of mild flu-like symptoms, explain health professionals at the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Nasal congestion, which occurs more commonly in children with mild flu-like symptoms, can cause sneezing or a runny or stuffy nose. You may find that you need to blow your nose frequently to remove excess mucus from your nasal passageways due to such symptoms. Increased nasal congestion can also make it difficult to breathe through your nose normally.

Chest Congestion

Chest congestion can occur in certain people due to mild flu-like symptoms. Symptoms of chest congestion can include a dry cough or a sore throat. Even a mild sore throat may interfere with your ability to eat or drink normally due to pain during swallowing. Such mild flu-like symptoms can contribute to a decreased appetite in some patients.

Body Aches

If you develop mild flu-like symptoms, you can experience aches and pains throughout your body. Your muscles may feel sore or your body can feel stiff when you walk or move around normally. These mild flu-like symptoms can also occur in conjunction with fever, fatigue or headache.

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