The subject for today is the Flu Season. Since the flu season is here and there are things that I think everyone should know. The first that I am sure not everyone knows, is that there is only one flu vaccine this year. You will not need to get two since the H1N1 is included in this years strain. The only reason that there were two separate vaccines last year was because it takes over 6mnths to grow the vaccine( on eggs by the way) so there was no way for them to include the H1N1 in the same seasonal flu vaccine in time. Which, if you work in the medical field is awesome. The ordering and making sure that those who were high risk got the vaccine was a little crazy!
So, what is the flu?
The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by the influenza virus. You can get a mild case to a severe case, that can even lead to death. ( a couple actors have passed from it, scary right).
What are the symptoms?
- fever-not everyone gets this when they have the flu
- body aches/muscle aches
- runny nose
- fatigue/feeling tired
- some may vomit or have diarrhea, common in children
How is it spread?
Studies show that it is spread by droplets/spit, from when you cough, sneeze, or talk. With kids they slobber and sneeze all over the place. It is good manners to keep your kids away from public playing areas if they seem like they might be getting a cold, to be on the safe side. Of course, this is my personal opinion and I apologize if this offends others. One can be contagious for up to 7 days after showing any symptoms, especially children. So, keep that in mind when you are considering taking that possible sick little one to a public playground or family function. Again, sorry if I offend anyone!
How does one prevent the flu?
There is only one reliable way to prevent and that is getting the flu vaccine. This is a yearly vaccine that you can get wither through injection or in a nasal spray. It is your choice as to which one to get.
Who is at high risk?
- Children under the age of 5, especially those under the age of 2
- Adults over the age of 65
- Healthcare workers
- Daycare providers
- Those with other medical conditions
- Lung Disease
- Heart Disease
- Blood Disorder
- Liver Disease
- Those allergic to chicken eggs(since this is what the vaccine grows on)
- Children under the age of 6mnths, it is not approved for them
- If you have reacted to the vaccine in the past
- Those with Guillian-Barr's, a disease where your body damages it's own nerve cells, that has developed within 6wks of getting the vaccine previously.
- Those with severe symptoms or fever should wait till the symptoms are gone
I hope that this information was helpful. Please let me know what you think. Take care and here is to hoping that our little ones stay as healthy as they can this Flu Season!!