flu in children - diagnosis and treatment

Flu in Children: Diagnosis and Treatment

Mar 01, 2022

The influenza virus (flu) is a highly infectious respiratory viral illness that can infect children and adults. For most children, the flu will only last for a week. This does not mean that the flu cannot become a serious illness, as some children may experience a more severe flu that needs hospitalization. If not treated, influenza can lead to lung infection, causing pneumonia, a fatal disease. It is important to note that there is a major difference between flu and a cold. Running a diagnosis is vital to ensure that your kid’s right medication is given. Express Emergency Room Abilene looks at the flu, how to know whether your child has one and how to treat the flu.

What Is a Flu?

The flu, also known as influenza, is a very infectious viral infection that affects the lungs’ air passages. Influenza leads to a cough, body aches and a high fever. This disease is very common during the winter season. This disease will resolve independently, and your child will be okay within a week.

Three types of viruses cause flu. Influenza A and B cause an epidemic during most winter seasons. These types of viruses are very dangerous as they can lead to fatalities. Therefore it is imperative to take your child to an emergency room in Abilene, TX, when they experience difficulty breathing. Influenza type C leads to a mild respiratory illness where there may be few to no symptoms.

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How Is Flu Communicated and Which Children Are at Risk?

Sneezing and coughing are common ways for the flu virus to spread from child to child. However, the virus can also survive on surfaces for a limited period. Doorknobs, toys, pens or pencils, keyboards, phones and tablets, and countertops are all examples.

It may also be spread through sharing eating and drinking utensils. By touching anything that has been touched by an infected individual and then touching his or her lips, nose, or eyes, your kid might get the flu virus.

It is important to note that the flu is more contagious twenty-four hours before the symptoms start, and therefore your child can be infected easily at this stage as there are no symptoms. The risk reduces after seven days of the illness. This makes it easier for children to get infected with the virus as they touch many surfaces and their mouth, eyes and nose.

Children are in danger of contracting the virus if they interact with infected individuals or children, have not had the flu vaccine, and do not wash their hands after touching surfaces. Therefore, it is important to look for a pediatric ER near you to give your child a flu vaccine jab.

Symptoms of A Flu in A Child and Diagnosis

Although the flu is a respiratory disease, the virus affects the whole body. A child can experience fever which can reach forty degrees Celsius.

The child can also experience body aches and headaches that may make your kid feel more tired than usual, and therefore they will not get involved in daily activities.

Dry cough, diarrhea, chills and a runny nose are other symptoms your child may experience. When these symptoms persist, it is advisable to look for pediatric emergency care where the doctor can diagnose the disease and treat your child accordingly.

Your child’s symptoms and medical history will be discussed with the healthcare practitioner to diagnose the flu. He or she will do a physical examination on your child. The flu may often be diagnosed based on the symptoms alone. However, other tests may be ordered by your child’s doctor, depending on his or her symptoms and overall health.

How Is a Child’s Flu Treated?

Your child’s treatment will be determined by his or her symptoms, age, and overall health. The severity of the ailment will also determine it. Treatment aims to help avoid or alleviate symptoms.

The treatment includes medicine such as acetaminophen, which helps lessen body aches and fever. Cough syrup may be prescribed if your child has severe coughing. Antiviral medicine is also used to shorten the length of the illness. However, it is important to know that the antiviral drug does not cure flu.

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How Do You Know Flu Is Serious and You Need To Visit To ER?

Infants might struggle to show their illness, particularly if they are not walking or talking. These flu emergency symptoms may signal it’s time to get your kid to an emergency room near you:

  • Extreme irritability
  • Skin or lips having a bluish tint
  • Lack of tears when the infant cries or having fewer wet diapers
  • Fast or trouble breathing
  • Flu-like symptoms seem to improve before a fever and cough return
  • Fever with rash

Visit a children’s emergency room for flu at Express Emergency Room Abilene if your infant’s flu symptoms aren’t getting better.

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