Flu is a distressing illness that in some cases can be serious, so if your child develops symptoms of the flu, you should seek medical advice. Jose Fragoso, MD, of Union City Paediatrics, in Union City, New Jersey, has over 30 years of experience in helping children when they’re sick with the flu, so your child is in safe hands. Dr. Fragoso is not only highly skilled in treating children when they have the flu, but also runs a vaccination program to help reduce the spread of flu and prevent his patients from being infected. Call the clinic today to find out more about vaccination, or book an appointment online.
Flu, or influenza to give it its full name, is caused by a virus that passes between people rapidly and causes a respiratory infection. Flu is a potentially serious condition that shouldn’t be confused with the common cold; a cold is unpleasant, but flu is far worse: If you’ve ever had the flu, you know how much more severe it is than a cold.
Flu is readily passed on through coughing and sneezing, when the virus spreads from the nose or mouth of an infected person through the air, or by touching a surface contaminated with the virus and transferring it to the mouth, nose, or eye.
Flu season is the period between fall and spring when an outbreak is most likely to occur. Flu travels rapidly through environments where people are in close contact, so schools can easily suffer an outbreak, affecting many children.
There are a number of different influenza viruses, so the severity of each symptom may vary, but typical symptoms of flu include:
The flu lasts for a week or often longer and has more severe symptoms than a common cold, so your child feels far sicker and more miserable with the flu.
Because a virus causes flu there are few effective treatments, so in most cases, rest and loving care plus alleviation of symptoms with pediatric pain-killing medications is the best course of action. Healthy children normally recover from the flu in a week or so with no lasting damage, but if your child complains of an earache or a feeling of pressure in their head, or if the fever isn’t going down, you should talk to Dr. Fragoso.
If your child is vulnerable because of a pre-existing medical condition, they have an increased risk of complications from the flu and should stay away from anyone with symptoms of the flu.
By far the best approach to managing flu is to have a flu shot every year. Because there are different strains of influenza virus, each year the vaccine is matched to the strain currently causing most problems. Protecting your child against flu by vaccinating every year is the safest option for all families, but is particularly important for certain groups of children:
Family members should also be vaccinated to increase protection for children in these groups and any children under five.
To find out more about the benefits of flu vaccinations, or discuss a suspected case of flu, call Union City Pediatrics today, or book an appointment online.