Once in a while we see the news fill up with outbreak cases on diseases. It can be a little scary to read about especially for parents with young children. The recent outbreak is the Influenza A which have been reported in Cyberjaya, Penang, and Klang. So how do you prevent this contagious viral infection? And if you do get it, what’s the best course of treatment for you or your loved one?
Influenza A Cases
Firstly, let’s talk about what Influenza A is and the cases that have been reported recently. Influenza is a type of contagious viral infection that affects your respiratory system. It is also commonly known as the flu. The Influenza virus can be classified into three categories which are A, B, and C.
Influenza A can be serious and cause widespread outbreaks and disease. Sometimes the symptoms can be confused with other conditions such as the common cold. Unfortunately, severe cases of Influenza A can be life-threatening if not treated properly.
Moving on, the Penang State Health Department has recorded 62 cases of individuals with Influenza-like illness. Meanwhile in Cyberjaya, 20 students and a teacher from SK Cyberjaya reported to have fever, cough, and flu. In Klang there was a case involving two siblings who showed symptoms.
So what are the symptoms of this common infection? Symptoms include coughing, runny or stuffy nose, sneezing, sore throat, fever, headache, fatigue, chills, and body aches. Sometimes these symptoms will resolve on their own with some rest and medicine.
However, if symptoms persist for more than a week with no improvement you must visit your doctor as soon as possible. This is especially so for those who are at a higher risk such as young children, elderly folks, and those with a weakened immune system.
Prevention is Better than Cure
Next, let’s talk about prevention. The best way to prevent the Influenza A flu is through annual vaccinations. Each vaccination will protect you against three to four different influenza viruses. This is important because the virus is constantly mutating and changing. As a result, last year’s vaccine might not work against this year’s virus.
Other methods of prevention include regular hand washing, avoiding crowds, covering your mouth when you cough or sneeze, and staying home if you develop a fever.
Treating Influenza A
If you find yourself with the symptoms of Influenza A then the number one thing to do is stay at home, rest, and drink lots of water. If the symptoms do not resolve after a week then visit your doctor. Your doctor might prescribe you with antiviral medication to help slow down the virus.