Signs & Treatment
How to tell if you have the flu:
Influenza illness occurs most commonly between November and April although you can catch it anytime of year. Most people with flu also have sudden onset of :
• Body aches
• Sore throat
• Some people infected with the novel H1N1 flu virus have reported milder symptoms than regular seasonal influenza, and some also have reported diarrhea and vomiting.
These symptoms could be signs of an illness other than flu. Respiratory symptoms can be caused by other respiratory illnesses. Diarrhea and vomiting can be caused by other infections, sometimes called gastroenteritis. Medical providers can test you for the flu in the first few days of your illness.
How should you treat your flu symptoms?
• Stay home until you have been without fever (without fever reducing medicines) for 24 hours
• Drink plenty of liquids
• Antiviral medicines may lessen symptoms if taken soon (<24-48 hours) after illness onset
• Take fever relief medicines such as acetaminophen (Tylenol®) or ibuprofen (Advil®, Motrin®). Do NOT use aspirin or aspirin containing products for flu symptoms in persons 19 or younger because of a risk of Reye’s syndrome.
• Do NOT expect your medical provider to prescribe antibiotics since they don’t work on influenza or other viruses.