Tips from a Pediatrician on how to keep your kids safe
By: Dr. Lisa Di Enno, MD, FAAP
It is that time of year again. Flu season. And, while some people may have previously never given a second thought to catching the flu, the increased anxiety that has come with COVID-19 has now brought increased attention to the flu.
Before you get too worked up over the impending flu season, let’s calm our fears with some knowledge. Sound good? Ok! Let’s go!
So often we think of the flu as having symptoms like nausea, vomiting, and muscle aches. But, truth-be-told, there are so many other symptoms, too. If your child, yourself, or someone you love has the flu, they may exhibit any (or all) of the following:
For those with younger children, symptoms are more often the upset stomach, nausea, etc. and not necessarily the sore through, sinus ailments, and so forth. Keep in mind that these are the most common symptoms, but there could potentially be other, less common symptoms, too.
Unlike the common cold, the flu’s symptoms come on quick and seem to come from out of nowhere! One minute you could be feeling great and the next – BOOM – it hits ya! Your child could be playing all day and then suddenly end up vomiting with a fever. It is rarely ever expected.
The Flu is Contagious
Yes, oh yes – the seasonal flu is contagious. It is spread by respiratory drops throughout the air. Coughing and sneezing releases these droplets into the air – and they float on by just waiting for someone to breathe them in.
Catching the flu is that easy.
That is why we stress the importance of covering the mouth when coughing or sneezing but doing so with the elbow and not the hand. Why? Think about it – if you teach your child to sneeze into his or her hand, she is going to do so and then proceed touching everything and to spread the germs. There are not many things that you touch with your elbow.
Of course, frequent handwashing is also very important.
What You Can Do
To keep your child, yourself, and your loved ones protected from the flu, you each must get the flu shot every year. See, this virus can knock you down – typically 5 to 7 days – and it can wreak havoc on your body. While most people recover just fine after the brutal illness, others are not so lucky. Even the healthiest individuals can die due to this ugly illness.
If you are on the fence about getting your shot, think of it this way: When you choose to get a flu shot, you are keeping yourself safe PLUS protect those vulnerable people around you.
Your pediatrician can answer any questions you may have about the flu. And, help you discover how you can get a flu shot for everyone in your family.
When you’re ready, the knowledgeable pediatricians at XpertCare are here for you. Schedule your appointment today.
Dr. Lisa Di Enno is the Chief Medical Officer at XpertCare Pediatric Digital Clinic. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or text her at 760.696.0601 to schedule an appointment.