Flu Warning Signs

Flu season arrived with no signs of mercy this year as America set out a series of medical emergencies in over 40 states as more and more people became afflicted by the virus. Hundreds of people were being admitted to hospitals in just 5 weeks since the start of the flu season and several death due to flu complications have been reported. This has led a lot of people searching for signs of this dreaded disease. And to help you and many others deal with the flu at the earliest possible time we at flu2013.com offers a list of signs that tells you that you or your love one has caught the flu virus.

Before we show you the flu warnings signs it is important to know that it will take up to a week for the flu virus to really affect our bodies. After that you will see the following signs:

  • Fever with body temperature 100 degrees Fahrenheit or more
  • Common respiratory problems such as cold and cough
  • Clogged and runny nose
  • Migraine accompanied by muscle pains
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Chills and Fatigue

The usual first sign is the respiratory problems which can be cough then cold or the opposite. This can then be treated by common flu medications like BioFlu, Tamiflu and Relenza. These are good drugs that will help deal with flu at the early stage.

The warning signs that everyone should know about are the flu symptoms that occur 5 days since the onset of the symptoms listed above. These early symptoms are expected to disappear within 5 days.

The warning signs vary between a child and an adult. But there are signs that are common to both.

Warning signs in both adults and children

  • Return of flu symptoms such as fever and cough but more severe this time
  • Abnormal breathing
  • Persistent vomiting

Warning signs in children

  • No tears when crying
  • Increased irritability
  • Skin color becomes bluish
  • Skin rash
  • Decrease in physical interaction

Warning signs in adults

  • Chest pain
  • Abdominal pain
  • Dizziness and confusion

Once you see these signs it is now time to rush yourself or your love one to the doctor or the hospital. Chest and abdominal pains are critical symptoms that can lead to death if not treated immediately. For children, the change in skin color means that the breathing trouble that they are experiencing is now causing hypoxia. This is a condition where the oxygen in the blood is so low that it is no longer enough for the entire body. When this happens while you have the flu organs would weaken further making them more susceptible to the onslaught of the virus. It can also lead to more complications in the respiratory system which already have problems providing oxygen to the body. For older adults, this can easily lead to death.

It will take a good amount of observation to notice these warning signs 5 days after verifying that you or your love one has the flu. Vigilance is required.

Please also visit our latest news post:

Flu Virus Still Getting Strong In Western States

 

FAQ

What is flu?

Flu or influenza is an infectious disease that usually affects mammals and birds.

What causes flu?

This infectious disease is caused by RNA viruses specifically of the Orthomyxoviridae family commonly called influenza viruses.

How will I know if a person has flu?

A person who has flu usually experiences some of the following symptoms: fatigue, coughing, headache, muscle pains, sore throat, fever, chills and general discomfort. When a person is experiencing these symptoms, there is a big chance that he/she has flu.

Some of the symptoms mentioned are also symptoms of common colds. How will I know the difference?

Flu is often mistaken for cold because of the running nose and sneezing symptoms. However, there are differences between flu and common colds that help in distinguishing the two. When you have flu, there’s a big chance that you’ll also have fever. You won’t have fever when you have common colds. You also feel exhausted when you have flu which may not be true when you have common colds.

If flu is contagious, how is it transmitted from one person to another?

Just like common colds, you get the disease from the infected person through direct contact such as sharing of personal stuff like spoon, fork and towel. When you know a person who is infected, don’t share personal stuff with him. Keep away also from infected persons who don’t cover their mouth when they sneeze. When you stand in front of the infected person when they sneeze, there’s a big chance that you’ll be affected with flu.

How do you treat flu?

Flu is a viral disease and has no cure. The treatment that will be applied depends on the symptoms of the ailment. If you have nasal or sinus blockage, take a decongestant to minimize the blockage. You may also try to use a nasal spray that can be bought over-the-counter. Saline spray is also good for blocked nasal passages.

If you have running nose and watery eyes, you can treat this with antihistamine. However, you need to be extra careful when combining antihistamine with decongestant. There are brands that have reactions when combined. Always consult your doctor when trying to treat the symptoms of flu.

What can I do to prevent flu?

There are many ways that protect you from having flu. First, have a healthy lifestyle. Always eat healthy and nutritious food. Have plenty of rest and exercise regularly. Minimize consumption of alcoholic drinks and when possible quit smoking.

Protect yourself from germs. Wash your hands regularly. When you know someone who has flu, as much as possible avoid contact. Don’t try to share personal items with the person who has flu.

You can also try flu vaccine. The government recommends this especially before the flu season.

Is flu vaccine safe?

The government has endorsed the use of flu vaccine however there have been reports that relate miscarriage and flu vaccine. There are those that say that miscarriages have spiked with the use of flu vaccine. To be safe, pregnant women and children should refrain from using flu vaccine. Aside from this issue, flu vaccine is relatively safe.

Read more about the current flu season in the US…

Distinguishing Flu Symptoms From Common Colds

Most often than not, people confuse common colds with flu, and vice versa, as both are characterized by similar symptoms. Flu and common colds are both cold by different viruses, making one simply different from the other. So if you’re suffering from either one of these illnesses, it’s wise that you know exactly what you have to address it with the right treatment.

Distinguishing Flu from Common Cold

Coughing, chilling and sweating, runny nose, stuffy nose, fever, headache, muscle ache, fatigue, sore throat, etc., are the usual symptoms we associate with either one of the illnesses. However, many of these symptoms are distinct to just one condition, and don’t show to the other. Either way, symptoms for both flu and common colds usually last for as short as 3 days to a couple of weeks or more, depending on the severity of the condition and level of immune system. Here are some key things that separate one from the other:

Flu, along with its virus that triggers the symptoms, usually come without warning, and one may develop symptoms for as fast as 2 to 3 days. The virus can make you really sick, and unfortunately; you have to let the illness run its course and let your own immune system battle with it for days. The virus usually goes for 4 to 5 days, but to be completely recovered from all of its symptoms, it may take 2 weeks or more. Of course, you can always treat the nagging symptoms such as headaches, muscle pain, and fever with Paracetamol and other similar medications for pain.

One of the scariest things about flu is that, when complications start to show up, and the illness doesn’t go by itself; it may lead into lung infection. Those with existing health problems, such as diabetes, lung problem, heart problem, kidney issues, etc. and elderly individuals (over 65 years of age) may experience the illness worse than healthy individuals.

Here are the common symptoms that cause people to confuse flu with common colds:

Chills and Sweats

These symptoms are usually caused by flu, and common colds doesn’t usually have this type of symptom.

Coughs

If it’s severe dry cough, then its flu, but if it’s a cough with milder phlegm discharge, then its common colds.

Fatigue

People experiencing flu full blast with its symptoms, can feel very and exhausted, which can last for days, or even weeks. Common colds, on the other hand, can cause people to feel tired, but they still function almost normally.

Fever

People suffering from flu may experience high fever (higher than 102° F), and may last for 3 to 5 days.

Headache

Severe headache may be experienced with flu, while common colds have milder, or usually no headaches at all.

Muscle Pains

Muscle pain is common in flu, and it may be experienced from all over the body, most especially during the early days of the illness. Arms, back, and legs are the usual target for muscle pain of the virus. On the other hand, common colds may cause relatively milder muscle aches, which are usually isolated around the upper body and the head.

Nausea

Flu comes with loss of appetite and vomiting, which usually develops into nausea. Common colds, on the other hand, don’t have this symptom.

Runny and Stuffy Nose

There may be some discharge for stuffy nose on flu, while common colds is usually associated with severe runny and stuffy nose with sneezing and lots of discharge.

Sore Throat

Flu may have sore throat, but a milder compared to common colds.

Both flu and colds are caused by infection of the virus, and unfortunately, we have to leave them run its course.  Though there are tons of drugs and medicines out there, your best treatment against both common colds and flu is to strengthen your own immune system and let your body deal with it. Of course, you can always take medications to lessen the discomfort caused by prevailing symptoms, such as headaches and muscle aches.

Though common cold’s symptoms don’t really leave people incapacitated during its stay in the body, people suffering from fly should never take the illness for granted, especially those with existing chronic illnesses, as it can develop into infection and cause more severe health issues.

You know that prevention is always better than cure, so for high-risk groups, it’s always better to have a strong resistance against these viruses. Build better immune system through balanced diet, good rest, and exercise. If symptoms persist, then visit your doctor and have him/her prescribe antibiotics to prevent opportunistic bacteria from affecting the whole body.

Read more about the current flu season in the US…