For Adults And Older Children
Adults and older children typically experience diminished appetite while sick with stomach flu.
Even if you feel hungry, avoid eating too much too soon. You shouldnt eat solid food at all while youre actively vomiting.
Once you start to feel better and your nausea and vomiting stop, opt for foods that are easy to digest. That can help you avoid additional stomach irritation.
A bland diet, such as the BRAT diet is a good one to follow while you recover. The starchy, low-fiber foods in the BRAT diet, which include bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast, help firm up stool and reduce diarrhea.
Choose a low-fiber bread and sugar-free applesauce. As you start to feel better, you can add other easy-to-digest foods such as plain baked potatoes and plain crackers.
While youre recovering, avoid things that might irritate your stomach or that might trigger additional bouts of nausea or diarrhea, including:
- fatty or greasy foods
- hard-to-digest foods, such as beef
- dairy products
Reasons to call the doctor for toddlers and children include:
- distended stomach
- severe, explosive diarrhea
- severe vomiting
- fever that doesnt respond to treatment, lasts more than 24 hours, or is over 103°F
- dehydration or infrequent urination
- blood in vomit or stool
Adults and the elderly should seek medical treatment if their symptoms are severe and last more than three days. Blood in vomit or stool also warrants a doctors care. If youre unable to rehydrate, you should also seek medical help immediately.
Why Rest Is Important When You Have The Flu
With Novembers arrival, its official: Were now in the heart of the cold and flu season. About 10-50 million Americans get the flu each year, and with the COVID-19 global pandemic, its more important than ever to stay healthy and strong.
At Prima Medicine, our providers want to help you stay healthy and flu-free. But we also understand that no matter how many preventive measures you take, you can still sometimes come down with the flu.
Our practice, with locations in Fairfax and South Riding, Virginia, offers comprehensive internal medicine services and urgent care. So we can give you a flu shot to help keep you from getting the flu, and if you do get the flu, we can give you treatment. Fortunately, there are things you can do at home to get over the flu faster.
One of the most important steps you can take when you have the flu is to get plenty of rest. Take a moment to learn more about the flu and why rest is key when youre sick.
How Can You Prevent The Flu
A flu shot is the best way to prevent the flu. Practicing preventative habits can also cut down on your chances of exposing yourself to the flu.Germs like the flu spread when people touch their eyes, nose, mouth, or even the food that they eat, explains Dr. Tyeese L. Gaines, board-certified Emergency Medicine Physician and Medical Director of UltraMed Urgent Care in Skokie, Illinois. Its a good habit to always wash your hands often with soap and water, or use an alcohol-based hand rub, but especially during flu season. Try to avoid close contact with sick people.The CDC advises you utilize several health habits to protect yourself:Avoid close contact with those who are sickWash your hands thoroughly and oftenAvoid touching your nose, eyes, and mouth especially when in publicDisinfect surfaces, especially if someone is sickEat well and get enough sleepStay hydratedYou can also prevent the flu by stopping the spread of germs to others. Always cover your coughs and sneezes. And should you come down with the flu yourself, stay home to avoid spreading the virus.
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/10have Foods Which Are Easy On Your Stomach
Encountering digestive troubles when you are fighting the flu can be very common, and most times, when you have a terrible case of the flu, proper eating habits go for a toss. It’s important to thus have meals and foods which are light and easy on the stomach, and equally nourishing. Traditional staples like oatmeal, soup, khichdi, dal are all easy and healthy. What you should also be concentrating on is filling up on nutrients which can assist the immune system in speedier recovery. Therefore, try to take in as much Vitamin C, antioxidants, zinc and protein through your meals to recover faster.
How Long Does Flu Last And Is It Serious
If you have flu, you generally start to feel ill within a few days of being infected.
You should begin to feel much better within a week or so, although you may feel tired for much longer.
You’ll usually be most infectious from the day your symptoms start and for a further 3 to 7 days. Children and people with weaker immune systems may remain infectious for longer.
Most people will make a full recovery and won’t experience any further problems, but elderly people and people with certain long-term medical conditions are more likely to have a bad case of flu or develop a serious complication, such as a chest infection.
Read more about the complications of flu
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How To Recover Quickly
There are a few steps you can take to speed up your recovery. First, do not eat or drink right after vomiting. It is important to give your stomach time to rest after it empties its contents.
Wait at least 15 minutes after vomiting before you take even a small sip of water. Increase your intake of water by small amounts. This will ensure your body can handle the water without repeated bouts of vomiting.
Recovering quickly requires the right self-care. Once you are symptom-free for a full 24 to 48 hours, you can return to work or school.
Help For Flu Patients
If you want a flu vaccine, your provider at Prima Medicine can provide you with a flu vaccine to help keep you healthy. If you currently have symptoms of the flu, schedule an appointment.
Our team can get you the treatment you need to alleviate your symptoms and shorten the duration of the illness. We offer same-day appointments at our urgent care clinics in Fairfax and South Riding.
To learn more about the flu and how you can treat it, book an appointment online or over the phone with Prima Medicine today.
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Recovering From The Flu
In general, most people recover from the flu within a few days, although your symptoms can persist for up to two weeks.
Because the flu is a viral infection, antibiotics arent a treatment option. The most essential things you can do to speed up your recovery from the flu is to get plenty of rest and drink lots of water and clear fluids.
There are also over-the-counter medications you can use to address individual symptoms of the flu, such as a cough and nasal congestion. Dr. Urell can recommend which medications are safe for you to use based on your medical history and the severity of your flu symptoms.
In severe cases, our team may prescribe antiviral medications to help you recover more effectively. Antivirals may also protect you from serious complications of the flu that can lead to hospitalization.
How Can I Avoid The Flu
Getting a flu shot every year is recommended for all people from 6 months. Many people in the above groups are eligible for free flu vaccination each year under the National Immunisation Program.
While not 100% effective, the vaccine provides a high level of protection and can reduce symptoms in those still getting sick.
Anyone in these at-risk groups with flu-like symptoms should see their doctor as soon as possible.
The original recommended timing between receipt of the 2 vaccines was a preferred minimum interval of 2 weeks .
Based on the latest medical advice the preferred minimum interval between vaccinations for COVID-19 and the flu is now 7 days.
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/10what Are Some Signs Of Infection Worsening To Be Careful Of
While a flu infection tends to get better in a week or ten days for most people, the infection can also turn severe for people and worsen without notice. The flu actually has a high rate of mortality. Therefore, those with a weak immune system should be careful and be on the lookout for these signs and symptoms of worsening health:
How Long Are You Contagious
You are usually contagious from the day before symptoms start. After that, you are most likely to spread the virus 3 to 4 days after symptoms begin, but you can still be contagious up to 7 days after your symptoms start.
Some people, especially those with weakened immune systems or underlying health conditions, can spread the virus for longer. This is because their bodies take a longer time to fight off the virus. One study of people hospitalized for the flu showed that 54% had positive PCR throat swabs after 7 days.
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Ask Your Doctor About Antiviral Drugs
Antiviral drugs are only available by prescription, so you must see a doctor first. These medications are typically reserved for people who are at high risk of developing complications from the flu.
These drugs prevent the virus from growing and replicating. They work best if you take them within 48 hours of having symptoms.
You may want to ask a doctor for a prescription antiviral if you:
- are under age 5
- are 18 or under and taking aspirin- or salicylate-containing medications
- are at least 65
- are pregnant or have given birth in the last two weeks
- have a chronic medical condition or youre taking other medications that weaken your immune system
- live in a nursing home or long-term care facility
- are Native American
- are extremely obese, with a body mass index of at least 40
The antiviral medication most commonly prescribed is oseltamivir . In October 2018, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved baloxavir marboxil , a new antiviral for people ages 12 and older.
Taking antiviral medications within two days of the onset of symptoms may reduce both the duration of the flu by about one day and the severity of symptoms.
I Think I Have The Flu Should I See A Doctor
Most people who are generally healthy wont need to see their doctor for the flu. Their immune system will fight the infection and symptoms will usually clear up on their own.
If you think you have the flu, try to rest, maintain a good fluid intake, and manage your symptoms. This will help you recover and prevent dehydration.
If you do need to see a GP for your symptoms, make sure you call ahead first so they can make sure theres no one in an at-risk group around when you have your appointment.
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Why Do You Need A Flu Vaccine Every Year
You need a flu vaccine every year for two reasons. First, flu viruses change and the flu vaccine is updated each year to target the flu viruses that are anticipated to spread that year. Second, the protection you get from a flu vaccine lessens with time, especially in older people. Getting your flu vaccine every fall gives you the best protection from that year’s flu viruses.
What Can You Do If You Get The Flu
If you get the flu, there are steps you can take to feel better. Act fast! First, talk with your health care provider. The flu and COVID-19 have similar symptoms, so you may need to get tested for an accurate diagnosis. This will also help determine which medications might make you feel better.
There are prescription drugs, called antivirals, that are used to treat people with the flu. If you take them within 48 hours after the flu begins, these drugs can make you feel better more quickly. Antivirals can also help reduce your risk of complications from flu. Antibiotics do not help you recover from the flu. Still, they are sometimes prescribed to help you recover from a secondary infection if it is caused by bacteria. Bacteria are a different type of germ than viruses.
If you are sick, rest and drink plenty of fluids like juice and water, but not alcohol. Medicine, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, can bring down your fever and might help with the aches and pains. It is important not to smoke if you are sick with the flu. It is a respiratory illness that can infect your lungs as well as your nasal passages. These same areas are also affected by smoking. Take it easy as much as you can until you are well.
Monitor your symptoms and talk with your doctor if your symptoms worsen or become severe. For example, if you:
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How Long To Stay Home
Experts generally agree that it’s best to stay home as long as you have severe symptoms, like a cough with mucus, vomiting, diarrhea, fever, or fatigue, because you may be contagious. And the CDC recommends staying home at least 24 hours after your fever goes away unless you need to leave the house for medical care or other urgent reasons.
Also, rest is an important part of getting over any illness, so there’s another reason to take it easy while you feel sick.
How quickly you recover from a cold or the flu depends on how healthy you are. In general, healthy people usually get over a cold in 7 to 10 days. Flu symptoms, including fever, should go away after about 5 days, but you may still have a cough and feel weak a few days longer. All your symptoms should be gone within 1 to 2 weeks.
When you go back to work or school, make sure to cover your mouth when you cough and wash your hands often so you don’t spread the illness to other people.
These viruses can develop into serious illnesses like pneumonia in people who have weak immune systems, asthma, or other respiratory conditions. So if you have a chronic illness, your healing time may be different.
The Best Treatment Is To Take Steps To Prevent Illness
Few common illnesses are more unpleasant than the flu. The aches and pains, chills, fever, and cough are bad enough add in the other potential symptoms of flu, including runny nose, vomiting, diarrhea, fatigue, or sore throat, and you’ll want the illness to be over as soon as possible. How long does the flu last? And does treating flu help make it go away faster? The answers depend on your particular health.
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/5what To Expect A Day
The progression of flu symptoms is somewhat the same for everyone. Anyone who gets infected and shows symptoms will have to go through the different stages of flu. Here’s a day-by-day breakdown of flu symptoms and what you can expect.
Day 1: If you have been exposed to the flu virus, you may be contagious even before the symptoms onset. On day 1, you will feel fine. But as you go about your work and daily activities, you will start experiencing a certain discomfort in your body, mild chills and body ache.
Day 2- 4: The next day, you might wake up with the classic symptoms of the flu including sore throat, fever, headache, blocked, stuffy nose and pain in the body. Between day 2-4, flu symptoms are at its peak. As per the CDC, you must maintain your distance from people around you, so as to contain the spread of the virus.
Day 5-6: By day 5, you will start to feel a bit better. With proper care and medical attention, the symptoms will become milder and you’ll experience less discomfort and pain. However, continue to stay home and rest. Drink as much water as you can and eat a healthy diet.
Please note: If you do not feel better by day 5 and still have severe symptoms, get yourself professional help. Figure out the source of your illness and make sure you do not come in contact with others.
Preventing The Spread Of Flu
You can help stop yourself catching flu or spreading it to others with good hygiene measures.
Always wash your hands regularly with soap and warm water, as well as:
- regularly cleaning surfaces such as your computer keyboard, telephone and door handles to get rid of germs
- using tissues to cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze
- putting used tissues in a bin as soon as possible
You can also help stop the spread of flu by avoiding unnecessary contact with other people while you’re infectious. You should stay off work or school until you’re feeling better.
In some people at risk of more serious flu, an annual flu vaccine or antiviral medication may be recommended to help reduce the risk of becoming infected.
- difficulty sleeping
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Check If You Have Flu
Flu symptoms come on very quickly and can include:
- a sudden high temperature of 38C or above
- an aching body
- diarrhoea or tummy pain
- feeling sick and being sick
The symptoms are similar for children, but they can also get pain in their ear and appear less active.
Cold and flu symptoms are similar, but flu tends to be more severe.
|Appears quickly within a few hours||Appears gradually|
|Affects more than just your nose and throat||Affects mainly your nose and throat|
|Makes you feel exhausted and too unwell to carry on as normal||Makes you feel unwell, but you’re OK to carry on as normal|