Health and medicine

Influenza – what should you know about it?

Influenza – what should you know about it?
It takes approx. 4 minutes to read this article

Both of these illnesses, in terms of symptoms, are very similar. However, influenza, compared to the common cold, is much more dangerous, and untreated, can lead to many complications. The cause of the common cold is infection of the upper respiratory tract by coronaviruses and rhinoviruses. Influenza, on the other hand, is caused by influenza viruses, divided into groups A, B and C, with the latter two being much milder and not as dangerous as those in group A.

Is it still a cold or already flu?

To find out what you’re sick with, it’s a good idea to follow the course of both diseases to identify symptoms and ailments. Although similar, they also have significant differences.

  • Cold – develops much slower than the flu. The epicenter of the disease is preceded by a few days of weakness, worse condition, and symptoms appear gradually. The common cold attacks the upper respiratory tract and is accompanied by a runny and congested nose, which makes breathing difficult, swelling of the mucous membranes, cough, fever, which usually does not exceed 38 degrees, and headaches. The greatest intensification of symptoms occurs around the 4th day of the illness, and the cold itself lasts for about a week. A persistent cough can last up to two weeks.
  • Influenza – develops rapidly, accompanied by high fever, muscle and joint pains all over the body and severe weakness. During the illness, there is a severe headache and chills, associated with fever. A runny nose is rare, and if it does appear, it usually takes a milder form. Influenza is most often associated with a dry and agonizing cough, which can also turn into a wet one, with a discharging secretion. Influenza lasts about 2 weeks. In the case of infants and young children, special attention should be paid to fever, which in their case, can be really dangerous.
Medicover Poland – Influenza – when to see a doctor?

Prevention of flu

The best cure for any disease is always sleep and rest. It is important that in case of any weakness you do not strain yourself, but stay at home and do not risk the development of the disease. It is worth to take vitamin supplements, take care of proper regeneration and a healthy diet, which have a beneficial effect on immunity and general well-being. Unfortunately, in the autumn and winter period it is very difficult to avoid infections, but you can try to reduce the impact of factors that cause them. Try to take care of hygiene and wash your hands often. Do not touch the face area with dirty hands, so as not to transfer bacteria and viruses. In the case of influenza, the primary method of prevention is non-mandatory flu vaccination. A popular option is a quadrivalent vaccine that contains antigens of two type A and two type B strains. Any adult can get vaccinated, as well as children who are at least 3 years old. It is important to take care of this, especially those people who are most vulnerable to later complications.

Ways to treat the flu

If, despite all efforts, the signs of the disease will be gaining strength, you can help yourself with natural methods, which were most often at the home of our grandmothers. A good idea is to prepare an infusion of linden flowers, milk with honey and butter or tea with lemon and ginger. If the prepared infusions are of no use, you should reach for pharmaceuticals. In the case of flu the best are anti-influenza drugs (antiviral), paracetamol, aspirin, or anti-inflammatory drugs based on ibuprofen. For a runny nose help drops that shrink the mucous membranes and make breathing easier. In case of persistent, dry cough, drugs based on butamirate are used. You can also reach for preparations based on pine extract. However, it should be remembered that taking any medication, you should consult with your health care provider, who will prescribe and adjust the appropriate dosage

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio/Pexels

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