H1N1 symptoms are similar to the seasonal flu virus but more severe. H1N1, or “swine flu,” is spread from person to person in the same way as the seasonal influenza virus. The H1N1 virus has an incubation period of three to six hours upon exposure and symptoms last for three to five days. The H1N1 virus is spread through sneezing, coughing, conversing with someone who is sick or by sometimes by touching the same object or surface with the virus on it and then touching your mouth or nose.
- Fever. Not everyone experiences fever but an H1N1 symptom sometimes include a fever greater than 100 F or 37.8 C.
- Sore throat. This is an uncommon H1N1 symptom but occasionally occurs, similar to regular influenza. If infected with the virus, you will experience soreness in your throat due to irritation to your tonsils.
- Cough. A hacking, non-mucus producing cough is a predominant H1N1 symptom. It is best to cover your mouth when coughing and wash your hands before you shake someone’s hand to avoid spreading the virus.
- Chills. A H1N1 symptom includes intense chills even in warm conditions. The common cold does not include this symptom and seasonal flu manifests chills that are only between mild to moderate.
- Fatigue. Slight to moderate body aches are symptomatic of regular and seasonal influenza but aching muscles for H1N1 are far more severe. A severe headache is also present in most cases.
- Shortness of breath. A sudden onset of weakness and fatigue signifies the beginning of a flu, whether H1N1 or another type of influenza.
- Vomiting. This is an additional H1N1 symptom. It does not occur all the time but you might experience this in some occasions. If vomiting is severe and persists, you must call an emergency number.
- Diarrhea. This is another uncommon H1N1 symptom but occurs in certain cases.
- Loss of appetite. A decreased appetite is caused by all the other factors, including fatigue, diarrhea and vomiting. When this occurs, you must take a lot of liquids to replenish your body.
- Runny nose. This is a similar symptom as seasonal flu. Although not a common occurrence for H1N1, a runny nose does appear in certain cases.