What is Flu?
Flu is a common infectious viral illness spread by coughs and sneezes.
It can be very unpleasant, but you’ll usually begin to feel better within about a week.

Flu can be more severe in certain people, such as:

  • anyone aged 50 and over
  • pregnant women
  • children and adults with an underlying health condition (such as long-term heart or respiratory disease)
  • children and adults with weakened immune systems.

Anyone in these risk groups is more likely to develop potentially serious complications of flu, such as pneumonia (a lung infection), so it’s recommended that they have a flu vaccine every year to help protect them.

Flu Symptoms

Flu symptoms come on very quickly and can include symptoms such as:

  • fever (temperature above 38°C)
  • aches
  • tiredness or exhaustion
  • headache

To find out more about flu – symptoms and how to treat flu visit NHS Inform

Flu-like illness Symptom checker

If you have a flu-like illness, complete NHS Informs self-help guide to assess your symptoms and find out what to do next Symptom checker.

Your Questions Answered - FAQs

If you have any questions or concerns regarding the flu vaccine, please visit our FAQs page


National Call Centre (available 8am to 8pm, 7 days a week)
0800 030 8013


Visit NHS Inform for further information on the Flu Vaccination programme

Watch our Videos

You can find out more by watching ...

Our flu information videos.

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