Due to the recent increased cases of influenza, if your child develops sudden onset of fever, cough and sore throat please call the office to schedule an appointment ASAP. Medication is most effective is started within 48 hours of onset of symptoms. Flu vaccine is still recommended, as this will lessen the severity of symptoms if your child contracts the flu. Due to the changing strain of the virus, your child can still get the flu despite receiving the vaccine.
How Flu Spreads
Person to Person
People with flu can spread it to others up to 6 feet away. Most experts think that flu viruses are spread mainly by droplets made when people with flu cough, sneeze or talk. These droplets can land in the mouth or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs. Less often, a person might also get flu by touching a surface or object that has flu virus on it and then touching their own mouth or nose.
To avoid this, people should stay away from sick people and stay home if sick. It also is important to wash hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub. Linens, eating utensils, and dishes belonging to those who are sick should not be shared without washing thoroughly first. Eating utensils can be washed either in a dishwasher or by hand with water and soap and do not need to be cleaned separately. Further, frequently touched surfaces should be cleaned and disinfected at home, work and school, especially if someone is ill.
The Flu Is Contagious
Most healthy adults may be able to infect other people beginning 1 day before symptoms develop and up to 5 to days after becoming sick. Children may pass the virus for longer than 7 days. Symptoms start 1 to 4 days after the virus enters the body. That means that you may be able to pass on the flu to someone else before you know you are sick, as well as while you are sick. Some people can be infected with the flu virus but have no symptoms. During this time, those persons may still spread the virus to others.