Flu (influenza) season is upon us, not just in Rhode Island, but also across the United States. Health Services has seen several recent cases, and according to the R.I. Department of Health flu surveillance is classified as widespread. Unfortunately, the flu vaccine offered this year has a low percentage of protection.
Signs and Symptoms of the Flu
- Fever, feeling "feverish" or chills
- Sore throat
- Runny or stuffy nose
- Muscle or body aches
- Fatigue (tiredness)
- Vomiting and diarrhea (more common in children)
People with certain health conditions such as chronic illness; heart, kidney, liver and blood disorders; neurological and neuromuscular disorders or weakened immune systems may have more severe illness from the flu.
If you suspect you have the flu, antiviral medication such as Tamiflu can help decrease the severity and/or length of the illness. This is a prescription medication that must be obtained from a health care provider.
It cannot be stressed enough to wash your hands frequently and avoid touching your face with your hands.