Protecting Yourself from the Flu

Protecting Yourself from the Flu

East Liverpool City Hospital takes steps to protect patients from the flu

East Liverpool City Hospital encourages people with milder flu symptoms to not come to the Emergency Room for care. Typical flu symptoms include a fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills, fatigue, diarrhea and vomiting. Should you experience these symptoms below, you should be brought to your local hospital’s emergency room.

In adults:

  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
  • Pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen
  • Sudden dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Severe or persistent vomiting
  • Flu-like symptoms that improve but then return with a fever and worse cough

In children:

  • Fast breathing or troubled 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

Additionly to the signs above in infants, get medical help right away for any infant who has any of these signs:

  • Being unable to eat
  • Has trouble breathing
  • Has no tears when crying
  • Significantly fewer wet diapers than normal

Many of these symptoms are associated with dehydration and pneumonia. Information about the symptoms for the flu and when you should come to the emergency room were pulled from the Centers for Disease Control website regarding seasonal flu. Certain age groups and people with specific medical conditions should contact their family doctor because they may experience flu-related complications. This category would include: young children ,four years and younger, the elderly, pregnant women and these long-term medical conditions; Asthma, cerebral palsy, epilepsy, stroke, mental retardation, moderate to severe developmental delays, muscular dystrophy, spinal cord injury, chronic lung disease, heart disease, blood disorders such as sickle cell, endocrine disorders such as diabetes, kidney disorders, liver disorders, metabolic disorders, weakened immune system such as people with HIV or cancer, people 19 and younger who are receiving long-term aspirin therapy and people who are morbidly obese or those people with a BMI of 40 or higher.

You can take steps to prevent getting the flu this season. The most effective method is getting a flu shot for everyone older than 6 months. Other methods that can be used to prevent the flu include, avoiding close contact with sick people, when sick – stay at home for at least 24 hours after your fever has gone – without the use of any fever reducing medications-and limit contact with others; when sick- cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze and throw the tissue in the trash immediately after it was used; wash your hands frequently with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available; avoid touching your eyes, mouth and nose; and clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that are touched frequently.