The flu is a dangerous and potentially life threatening virus. The CDC is reporting that the outbreak of flu has become an epidemic and has resulted in multiple deaths. especially vulnerable are young children and elderly people. Symptoms may not present immediately after exposure and contracting the virus. There are many strains of flu and different ones attack more aggressively on different years.
Symptoms of the Flu
Common flu symptoms include fever, muscle aches, chills, fatigue, headache, runny nose, cough and congestion. Some of these symptoms mimic the common cold so it’s important to know if you have the flu so that you can avoid exposing other people, get tested, and begin treatment as soon as possible.
Testing for the Flu
There are in-clinic flu tests that will test for the most common strains. It’s important to get tested for the flu shortly after developing symptoms since some treatments are only effective if begun in the early stages of the illness. It’s also important to know if you have the flu so that you can avoid spreading the illness to your family, friends, and co-workers.
Treating the Flu
While there is no cure for the flu, it’s important to treat symptoms to reduce their severity as well as reduce the duration of the illness. At home it’s important to get plenty of rest, and drink plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration and additional symptoms. Over the counter decongestants and pain relievers may help with fevers and sinus pain, but there are clinical treatments that will treat your symptoms and lessen the duration of the flu. Visiting Urgent Care 24/7 as your symptoms develop will allow you receive care and treatment that will shorten the duration of the flu and reduce the severity of the symptoms.
Preventing the Flu + Flu shots
It’s important to get a flu shot every year. Each year, the flu vaccine is developed based on a complex scientific formula that estimates what flu strains will hit the hardest this year. While the flu shot is not 100% effective against all strains of the flu, it can help lessen the duration and symptoms if you do contract the flu. Flu shots are especially important for children and elderly people.
Other precautions to take to avoid getting the flu?
- Wash hands your hands regularly and thoroughly, especially after contact with others.
- Clean grocery carts and other public items that you will handle.
- Use hand sanitizer after handling things in public places.
- Avoid exposure to others who are symptomatic or known to be ill.
- Change the towels in your home daily to avoid spreading germs and growth of additional bacteria.
- Get plenty of rest so your body is optimally equipped to fight illness.
- Keep your airways moistened with saline nasal sprays or neti-pots.
There are many benefits to getting a vaccination. The flu shot:
- Prevents the flu – Flu shots can help reduce the chance of catching it. Don’t wait until it hits you to get a shot!
- Assists those with chronic health issues – Those suffering from chronic issues, such as heart problems or diabetes, can reduce their risk of being hospitalized by getting vaccinated.
- Protects pregnant women – Flu shots are an important component of pregnancy and pediatric care before, during and after birth. Don’t put yourself or your baby at risk by skipping them!
- Lessens the flu’s effects – While a flu vaccination doesn’t completely reduce the chance of you catching it, you won’t be as sick if you’ve gotten the shot.
- Protects people around you – You staying healthy helps everyone around you stay healthy, too.
Come get your flu shot today so you and your loved ones can stay as healthy as possible!