Influenza

Influenza, which is a highly contagious disease commonly, happens from virus. Influenza spreads easily from person to person, mainly when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Viruses that infect the nose, throat, and lungs cause influenza, which is also known as the flu.

Reasons, occurrence and risk factors

Influenza commonly called “flu" is caused by viruses that infect the respiratory tract. Most people who get the conventional or seasonal flu recover completely in one to two weeks, but some people develop serious and potentially life-threatening medical complications, such as pneumonia.

Influenza viruses cause the flu and are divided into three types, designated A, B, and C. Influenza types A and B are responsible for epidemics of respiratory illness that occur almost every winter and are often associated with increased rates of ill patients and death.

These category people are in great risk.

  • Children of are 6 months to 4 years
  • People who are 50 years of age and older;
  • People who have chronic pulmonary disease like asthma
  • Women who are or will be pregnant during the influenza season;

Symptoms

Problems related to symptoms of influenza in adults can happen if they develop a bacterial infection, which can cause pneumonia in already weakened lungs. If a person has clinical symptoms that are essentially the same as the symptoms of other people with known cases of the flu, then the doctor may make the diagnosis without testing.

These common flu symptoms start quickly and can include:

  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Dry cough
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Headache
  • Muscle aches
  • Extreme fatigue.

Signs and Tests

Flu test is known by some names which are as follows:

  • Influenza rapid antigen test
  • Influenza type A and B antigen detection by direct fluorescent antibody (DFA)
  • Influenza type A and B antibody
  • Influenza A and B culture;
  • Real-time polymerase chain reaction test
  • Viral Culture Test
  • Rapid influenza diagnostic test (RIDT

In these tests normally a blood sample or a throat swab is collected for examination.

Prevention

There are some safety measures which are needed to prevent people from flu:

  • Using clean water for drinking, cooking and bathing
  • Having black or Herbal Tea
  • Most of the illness and death caused by influenza can be prevented by annual influenza vaccination. So make sure to not to forget to receive flu vaccination.
  • Washing your hands with an antiseptic soap before eating or after doing any outdoor work
  • Try to have more garlic as Garlic is known for its antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal properties and can prevent infections from taking hold and spreading

Treatment

Some domestic treatments which are to be followed in case of treating flu are:

  • Increasing liquid intake, warm showers, and warm compresses, especially in the nasal area, can reduce the body aches and reduce nasal congestion.
  • Using nasal strips and humidifiers may help reduce congestion, especially while trying to sleep.

Before flu season begins, researchers prepare a new influenza vaccine made from deactivated (killed) flu viruses, which cannot cause infection. The preparation is based on the flu viruses that are currently in circulation and on viruses that are expected to circulate the following winter. The influenza vaccine is a yearly vaccination because the viruses that cause the disease change every year.

In case of medications some antivirals which are prescribed in flu are Vicks Dayquil/Cold and Flu, Acetaminophen, Cetirizine, Benadryl etc.