Flu Influenza

The best way to prevent the flu is to have a yearly flu vaccine. The seasonal flu shot protects against the three or four viruses that are predicted to be the most common for the upcoming flu season. The vaccine can change from one year to the next, which is why you must get the vaccine yearly. Please see the information provided in the link to the CDC. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/index.htm

Causes

  • Virus-influenza A, B or C viruses with many viral strains of each. Influenza A is the most virulent.
  • These viruses attack the lining of the respiratory tract (nose, throat, bronchi, lungs) and cause them to become swollen and inflamed.
  • The symptoms usually appear 18-36 hours after exposure to the virus. It is spread by coughing and inhalation of the virus.

Symptoms

  • Fever, chills, headache, and body aches which last from 1 to 3 days.
  • Cough - which may last 7 to 10 days.
  • Fatigue and weakness which may last for 2 weeks depending on your general health and how closely you follow the prescribed treatment

Treatment

  • Bed rest while the fever lasts.
  • Drink large quantities of fluids.
  • Tylenol, two tablets, every 4 to 6 hours for fever over 101 degrees and general aches.
  • Cough medicine. This may be purchased over the counter. Follow the package directions.
  • Humidify the air of the home or room with a vaporizer or steam from a pan on the stove or hearing unit.

Seek Medical Attention If You Have Any of the Following:

  • Fever over 101 degrees lasting longer than 3 days.
  • Coughing up blood or greenish-yellow mucus.
  • Severe nausea, vomiting or diarrhea.
  • Severe or persistent abdominal or chest pain.
  • Chronic illness such as diabetes, lung, heart or kidney disease.