Influenza Symptoms, Ways to Diagnose & Protect Child From Flu
Created by Dr. Surbhi Saini Updated on Jul 14, 2021
Influenza is a respiratory infection commonly known as “flu”. It is caused by the influenza virus. A virus has a unique property of changing its own structure time to time, hence a person having any form of viral disease, may not be immune to it lifelong. Similar is the case with influenza. Majority of cases are seen around crop cutting season. [Know More: Influenza Types & Why Protection Against Each Is Essential?]
How Does Influenza(Flu) Spread in Children?
The influenza virus is present in the nose or throat of children, they can catch this virus from any one of the following ways...
Direct Contact –like touching, holding hands with a person infected with this, has germs over hands, nose, cough, and eyes as well
Droplet infection -when an infected person sneezes or coughs droplets may reach uninfected person’s nose or mouth and lead to infection
Indirect contact -it means touching something that might contain some germs being passed as the object might be used by the infected person like toys, doorknobs, towels, handkerchiefs
Symptoms Influenza(Flu) in Children
Influenza (Flu) strikes more commonly than cold. But the thing is that it mimics common cold in its symptoms. Though a child having influenza is more lethargic and feels sicker. Typical Influenza(Flu) symptoms include
- Headache (most common)
- Sudden fever or Viral Fever
- Body ache
- Extreme fatigue/tiredness
- Dry cough
- Loss of appetite
How Flu Symptoms Are Different from Common Cold?
- Newborns with unexplainable high fever and without any other signs of sickness
- Young children may develop a high fever (above39.5 Celsius) and might also be accompanied be febrile seizures
- Upset stomach, pain, vomiting, diarrhea, ear-ache, red eyes, sinusitis and sometimes pneumonia
How to Protect Child From Influenza?
How to prevent influenza (Flu) in children? It can be prevented through immunization. If your child is above 6 months of age, he/she should get a flu shot every year and especially those who are at a high risk of developing this disease which is children under 5 years of age and those suffering from any form of chronic disease. Happy to take the pledge to keep children safe from the flu.
Apart from this, here are some daily practices that play a significant role in reducing the spread of this virus -
- Washing hands-it plays a significant role.
- Wash hands after coughing, sneezing or wiping nose using soap and water
- Wash your own hands after you wipe your kid’s nose
- Avoid using the same tissue or handkerchief by more than one person
- Avoid sharing toys that kids put in their mouth and maintain their proper hygiene
- Avoid sharing clothes, towels without properly washing
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