Recommended prevention, warning signs and treatment of the flu
ŸIf you are sick with flu-like illness, stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone without the use of fever-reducing medicine.
ŸWash your hands often with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub.
ŸAvoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread this way.
ŸTry to avoid close contact with sick people.
ŸPractice good health habits. Get plenty of sleep and exercise, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids and eat healthy food.
ŸCover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
Warning signs provided by the Centers for Disease Control:
ŸBluish skin color.
ŸFast or troubled breathing.
ŸNot drinking enough fluids.
ŸNot waking up or not interacting.
ŸBeing so irritable that the child does not want to be held.
ŸFlu-like symptoms improve but then return with fever and worse cough.
ŸFever with a rash.
In addition to the signs above, get medical help right away for any infant who has any of these signs:
ŸBeing unable to eat.
ŸHas trouble breathing.
ŸHas no tears when crying.
ŸSignificantly fewer wet diapers than normal.
ŸDifficulty breathing or shortness of breath.
ŸPain or pressure in the chest or abdomen.
ŸSevere or persistent vomiting.
ŸFlu-like symptoms that improve but then return with fever and worse cough.
ŸGetting plenty of rest.
ŸDrinking clear fluids like water, broth, sports drinks or electrolyte beverages to prevent becoming dehydrated.
ŸPlacing a cool, damp washcloth on your forehead, arms and legs to reduce discomfort associated with a fever.
ŸPutting a humidifier in your room to make breathing easier.
ŸGargling salt water to soothe a sore throat.
ŸCovering up with a warm blanket to calm chills.
ŸIf you are an at risk individual (pregnant, over 65, person with underlying chronic conditions) you should contact your health care provider if you develop influenza-like symptoms.
ŸYour health care provider may prescribe antiviral medications to make your illness milder and prevent serious complications.
ŸYour health care provider may also prescribe antibiotics if your flu has progressed to a bacterial infection.