What is influenza?
The viral infection, influenza attacks our respiratory system such as lungs, throat and nose. The medical term influenza is commonly known as flu. The complications can be serious. Individuals, those who are more likely to face complications of influenza are older adults, young children, pregnant women, individuals suffering from chronic illnesses and individuals who have weak immune system.
Receiving the annual vaccination can help us protect against influenza. At first, the condition may feel as a general cold due to sneezing, sore throat and runny nose. However colds mostly develop gradually, while it starts suddenly. This condition is worse than the condition in cold.
What are the symptoms of influenza?
Common symptoms include:
- Aching muscles, particularly in the legs, arms and back.
- Fever above 100 F.
- Sweats and chills,
- Dry cough.
- Weakness and fatigue.
- Nasal congestion.
What are the causes of influenza?
The viruses of flu travel in form of droplets through the air when an infected individual sneezes, talks or coughs. The droplets can be directly inhaled, or the germs can get transferred through an object for example a computer keyboard or a telephone, and then pass on to your nose, mouth or eyes.
What are the risk factors of influenza?
Certain factors that tend to increase the risk to develop influenza and its complications are:
- Age: for the seasonal influenza, individuals above 65 and young children are mostly at a greater risk.
- Occupations: child care workers and health care personnel tend to have the increase risk to develop influenza due to direct contact with infected people.
- Chronic illnesses: such as heart problems, diabetes, and asthma can increase the risk to face the complications.
- Weakened immune system: anti-rejection drugs, cancer treatments, HIV/AIDS and corticosteroids tend to weak your body’s immune system. Hence, making your body a soft target of numerous diseases to attack, say influenza and its complications.
- Pregnancy: pregnant ladies are at a higher risk to experience complications of influenza especially in their 2nd and 3rd trimesters.
What are the complications of influenza?
In case an individual is healthy and young, seasonal influenza is not mostly serious in the case. Though, high-risk adults and children can develop complications for example:
- Sinus infections.
- Ear infections.
How is influenza treated?
Normally, intake of excessive fluids and complete bed rest is all what you need to treat this disease effectively. However in few cases, the doctor can recommend antiviral medications.
What are the preventive measures of influenza?
Even though the vaccine cannot completely protect you against it, yet it is important to get yourself vaccinated. Contact your doctor to learn more about influenza vaccination.
Few preventive measures can help reducing or preventing the spread of its germs.
- Frequently and thoroughly wash your hands.
- Cover your nose and mouth when you cough and sneeze.
- Avoid places of heavy crowds.
By : Natural Health News