Have you been noticing an unusually high number of co-workers calling in sick or people all around you suffering from the sniffles and coughing, this is because the influenza virus has dramatically increased this season, up 4,289 percent from this time last year. Statistic obtained from the Arizona Department of Health Services. It’s believed the increase is due to the early start of the flu season. The first case was reported on October 30, 2012. Last season, the first case wasn’t reported until December 14, 2011.
Influenza (flu) is a contagious respiratory illness spread mostly through coughing and sneezing. Influenza viruses circulate in Arizona every year and the best way to prevent the flu is to get vaccinated. The flu vaccine is available at West Valley Internal Medicine. Everyone six months and older should get vaccinated to fight the flu.
Preventing the Flu: Get Vaccinated!
The single best way to prevent the flu is to get a flu vaccination. ADHS and CDC recommend a yearly flu vaccine as the first and most important step in protecting against flu viruses. All 3 locations of West Valley Internal Medicine have the influenza(flu) vaccine call us at (623) 334-8671 to schedule your appointment today!
What everyday steps can I take to stop the spread of germs?
There are steps you can take in your daily life to help protect you from getting the flu.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth. Germs spread this way.
- Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
- Practice good health habits. Get plenty of sleep and exercise, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids, and eat healthy food.
- Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
- If you are sick with flu-like illness, stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone without the use of fever-reducing medicine.
According to Arizona Department of Health Services a person suffering from the influenza should see a doctor if the following serious problems are occurring
- High fever (more than 101 F) lasts more than 3-4 days
- When you are so sick that you or your family cannot take care of you at home
- Extreme dizziness
- an adult not able to take fluids for 24 hours, an infant who is not taking fluids and is starting to get dehydrated (not wetting diapers)
Not everyone with influenza needs to see a doctor, most people get better with rest and fluids.
When should someone go to an emergency department?
- Having trouble breathing
- Being confused or incoherent
- Having a seizure
For these problems, take the ill person immediately to an emergency department, or call 911.
For more information or to schedule your appointment call us at (623) 334-8671 or Request An Appointment Online.