Tis' the season for influenza!
Unfortunately, we do not know exactly how our flu season will be, but we do know the absolute BEST way to protect yourself against influenza is getting your flu shot. Other tips include:
Good hand hygiene
Cover your cough/sneeze
Stay home when sick
Symptoms of the flu can occur abruptly and can include the following:
SOMETIMES nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea
For certain populations, treatment with an antiviral could help shorten the duration of the illness and prevent complications, such as pneumonia. These medications work best when taken at the first sign of illness and within the first 48 hours of symptoms.
There are four FDA-approved flu-fighting medications for children including Oseltamivir, Zanamivir, Baloxavir, and Peramivir.
These medications DO have potential (and nasty) side effects, and therefore overall healthy individuals without underlying medical conditions may choose to let the flu run its course. Caveat: Although children under the age of 5 are at an increased risk for flu complications, kids under the age of 2 are considered the most vulnerable age group, and treatment is indicated. This is a discussion to have with your child's healthcare provider.
If you are concerned that your child has the flu, take them to his/her primary care provider for an evaluation and possibly testing.