Swine flu is here to stay (BOO!) and in an effort to keep all of us informed and hopefully, swine-flu free, I thought it might be helpful to share some information about it.
All information taken directly from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.
Are there human infections with 2009 H1N1 virus in the U.S.?
- Yes. Human infections with 2009 H1N1 are ongoing in the United States. Most people who have become ill with this new virus have recovered without requiring medical treatment.
Is 2009 H1N1 virus contagious?
- The 2009 H1N1 virus is contagious and is spreading from human to human.
How does 2009 H1N1 virus spread?
- Spread of 2009 H1N1 virus is thought to occur in the same way that seasonal flu spreads. Flu viruses are spread mainly from person to person through coughing or sneezing by people with influenza. Sometimes people may become infected by touching something – such as a surface or object – with flu viruses on it and then touching their mouth or nose.
What are the signs and symptoms of this virus in people?
- The symptoms of 2009 H1N1 flu virus in people include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue. Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea. People may be infected with the flu, including 2009 H1N1 and have respiratory symptoms without a fever. Severe illnesses and deaths have occurred as a result of illness associated with this virus.
Who is considered “at risk” in regards to the flu?
- children under the age of 5 years old, people 65 years and older, pregnant women, people of any age with certain chronic medical conditions
How long can an infected person spread this virus to others?
- People infected with seasonal and 2009 H1N1 flu shed virus and may be able to infect others from 1 day before getting sick to 5 to 7 days after. This can be longer in some people, especially children and people with weakened immune systems and in people infected with the new H1N1 virus.
What are the emergency warning signs indicating immediate care by a doctor?
- Children: fast breathing or trouble breathing, bluish skin color, not drinking enough fluids, not waking up or not interacting, being so irritable that the child does not want to be held, flu like symptoms improve but then return with fever and worse cough, fever with a rash
- Adults: difficulty breathing or shortness of breath, pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen, sudden dizziness, confusion, severe or persistent vomiting
What You Can Do to Stay Healthy
- Get vaccinated. Vaccination is the best protection we have against flu. Seasonal flu vaccine is available now and initial doses of 2009 H1N1 flu vaccine also are available, with additional doses available later this year.
- Influenza is thought to spread mainly person-to-person through coughing or sneezing of infected people.
- Take everyday actions to stay healthy.
-Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
-Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
-Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Germs spread that way.
-Stay home if you get sick. CDC recommends that you stay home from work or school and limit contact with others to keep from infecting them.
- Follow public health advice regarding school closures, avoiding crowds and other social distancing measures.
- Find healthy ways to deal with stress and anxiety.
- Stay informed. This website will be updated regularly as information becomes available.
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