Early Arizona numbers show a 70% increase in flu cases compared to the number of cases reported last year at this time.
Influenza or the flu as it is commonly know is very unpredictable and can vary from season to season. Often flu and cold symptoms mimic each other; sore throat, headache, muscle aches, nasal congestion, runny nose, and cough. So how do you know if you have the flu or a cold?
“Flu symptoms are usually more severe, come on quickly, and you will probably have a fever of 100 degrees or higher, lasting 3 to 4 days,” says Karen Smith RN, Quality & Infection Prevention Manager at Wickenburg Community Hospital. “Vomiting and diarrhea are not typical symptoms, yet may be present in children,” says Smith.
Treatment may include over-the-counter decongestants, pain relievers, or fever reducers, however over-the counter cough and cold medicines should not be given to young children. Your medical provider may prescribe antiviral drugs for flu in some cases.
How can you help prevent the growing number of flu cases? It is not too late to get your flu shot, wash your hands often, and if you are sick, please stay home and recover.
Please contact the Wickenburg Community Hospital Clinic for questions or to make an appointment.