talking about sickness in english

In this English lesson, you’re going to learn key English phrases so you can talk about sickness.

You’ll learn some key differences between British and American English, the difference between sore and ache, and a fantastic idiom to use when you’re in pain.


Watch the Conversation about Sickness

Key Phrases from the Lesson

The most common ways to say that you are sick are:

  • I don’t feel very well
  • I feel sick
  • I’m sick

To give it more emphasis, you can say: I feel terrible today.

You’ll notice that we used terrible and awful a lot in this lesson.

Have a Cold / I’ve Got a Cold

There is a difference here:

  • I have a cold (more common in American English)
  • I’ve got a cold (more common in British English)

Ache vs Sore

We use ache with our head, stomach, and teeth:

  • I’ve got a headache
  • I’ve got a stomach ache (or stomachache)

Sore is more common and is used for your neck, back, throat, and muscles.

  • I’ve got a really sore back today
  • I’ve got such a sore throat

It’s Killing Me

This is a great idiom to use. I made a lesson on this here.

  • My neck is killing me today!
  • My back is killing me!

Temperature vs Fever

Again, we have a difference between British and American English here.

  • My son has a temperature today (British)
  • My son has a fever today (American)

I also used the phrasal verb pick up here!

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