Take 3 Actions to Fight the Flu

2018 flu season has caused many death cases and people are getting more and more cautious about flu symptoms. CDC has released 3 steps to fight the flu. It’s not new but in flu season it’s necessary to remind eveybody of these 3 steps.

  1. Vaccinate
  2. Stop Germs
  3. Antiviral Drugs if your doctor prescribes them.

Vaccinate

  • The flu vaccine is the most important step in preventing influenza infection.
  • Flu vaccines protect against 3 or 4 different flu viruses. Three component vaccines contain an H3N2, an H1N1 and a B virus. Four component vaccines have an additional B virus component.
  • Although the vaccines contain components fighting H3N2, flu vaccines usually do not work as well against H3N2 viruses. This year H3N2 has been the common virus, but the proportion of influenza B and H1N1 viruses is increasing and flu vaccines usually work better against those viruses.
  • Even with reduced vaccine effectiveness, vaccination may still prevent some flu illnesses, medical visits and hospitalizations.
  • People at high risk of serious flu complications include young children, pregnant women, people with chronic health conditions like asthma, diabetes or heart and lung disease and people 65 years and older.

Stop Germs

  • Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
  • While sick, limit contact with others as much as possible to keep from infecting them.
  • If you are sick with flu-like illness, stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone, meaning your fever is gone for 24 hours without using a fever-reducing medicine.
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Germs spread this way.
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that may be contaminated with germs like the flu.

Antiviral Drugs

  • Antiviral drugs are different from antibiotics. They are prescription medicines and are not available over-the-counter.
  • Antiviral drugs can make illness milder and shorten the time you are sick. They may also prevent serious flu complications.
  • CDC recommends rapid antiviral treatment in people who are very sick with flu or people who are at high risk of serious flu complications who develop flu symptoms.
  • For people with high-risk factors, treatment with an antiviral drug can mean the difference between having a milder illness versus a very serious illness that could result in a hospital stay.
  • Studies show that flu antiviral drugs work best for treatment when they are started within 2 days of getting sick, but starting them later can still be helpful, especially if the sick person has a high-risk health condition or is very sick from the flu. Follow your doctor’s instructions for taking this drug.
  • Flu-like symptoms include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue. Some people also may have vomiting and diarrhea. People may be infected with the flu, and have respiratory symptoms without a fever.

 

Related FAQ:

Tips in Flu Prevention

Flu Season Getting Worse – Protect Children

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* The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.