Flu Causes and Symptoms

Influenza Causes

Influenza, also known as flu, is a highly contagious viral disease affecting the upper respiratory tract like the common cold. Still, the symptoms of influenza are more severe and develop suddenly. Apart from feeling miserable for a few days, influenza does not represent any significant health risks for most otherwise healthy adults. Still, it can lead to severe complications and even death in people suffering from chronic illness or having severely weakened immune systems.

Types of Influenza Viruses

Influenza is caused by one of three types of influenza viruses: A, B, and C. Most flu epidemics are caused by types A and B.

Type A, which is further subdivided into different subtypes, is responsible for deadly pandemics every few decades (Spanish flu in 1918, Asian flu in 1957, Hong Kong flu in 1968, and the 2009 flu pandemics). Type B typically results in localized influenza outbreaks.

Type A is also found in animals, including pigs and birds, which can be spread to other species, including humans, while type B infects humans exclusively.

Type C is relatively stable compared to types A and B, which are constantly mutating, resulting in new strains. No large epidemics have been caused by influenza virus type C so far.

All influenza viruses are highly contagious. An infected person can spread the influenza virus about one day before developing influenza symptoms for up to 7 days after the onset. One can get infected by inhaling infected droplets in the air, which are spread through talking, sneezing, and coughing by someone infected, through direct contact with an infected person such as kissing or sharing eating utensils and other items with an infected person as well as through contact with contaminated surfaces.

One can easily pick up the influenza virus by touching an infected handle, elevator buttons, keyboards, television remotes, telephones, and other smooth surfaces and then touching eyes, nose, or mouth without washing hands. Influenza is more common in the winter months (seasonal flu) when people spend more time indoors and have closer physical contact.

At the risk of influenza virus infection are everyone who is not vaccinated every year due to the constant development of new influenza strains. Still, the risk of getting flu is increased in infants, small children, and people with a weakened immune system.

More likely to become infected with the influenza virus are also people who work in health care facilities, children’s daycare facilities, or other places which involve close contact with other people, in first place children.

Flu Symptoms

A period of winter is positive emotions from snow, Christmas holidays, and fun. In medicine, winter is regarded as the severest because influenza actively spreads in this season.

Influenza is a viral disease that spreads by the droplet way. It is an acute respiratory disease that affects people regardless of sex, age, and place. From time to time, influenza spreads like an epidemic and causes significant damage to medicine because the flu virus may mutate, causing complications in the treatment. Every person can fall ill with the flu. There are about 2000 types of influenza manifestations, and the majority of them are successfully treated.

Periodically new influenza types appear to have more severe character and are not treatable by the common antiviral medications. That is why this viral disease can be easily prevented than treated.

A lot of people are mistaken that any respiratory disease is influenza. Although the symptoms of these viral infections are similar, influenza differs by its severity and complications.

Symptoms of the typical seasonal influenza:

  • High temperature 39-41°C (102-105°F) which lasts from 2 to 5 days
  • Absence of cold and throat pain
  • Severe headache
  • Indisposition and weakness
  • Body pain
  • Sweating
  • Painful cough
  • Hallucinations
  • Vertigo

It is necessary to mention that cold and throat pain may occur in the disease because microbes actively develop in case of weak immunity.

Influenza is hard to tolerate. This virus is not prolonged, but extreme and severe symptoms inhibit immunity and a human’s activity. As mentioned, flu is treatable, but it is better to prevent the appearance of this disease to be healthy.

Prevention of influenza

To prevent this severe disease, it is recommended to follow conditions, especially in the period of the activity of the virus in winter.

Initially, it is necessary to increase the consumption of Vitamin C. According to the data of doctors, Vitamin C can strengthen immunity. And though this method will not protect you against the disease, the symptoms of the disease become weaker.

Vaccination is one of the main ways of influenza prevention. An anti-influenza vaccine is introduced, and as a rule, it contains antigens of the three strains of influenza virus, which are very active at this time.

Folk methods always help us to make the symptoms of any disease easier and sometimes prevent it. A strengthening of the immunity by the folk methods helps to avoid influenza and be protected in the period of the activity of this virus. The folk methods contain the use of the herbal potion, healthy lifestyle – sports, fresh air, and conditioning to the cold.

If there is a person with flu, it is necessary to reduce contact with this person.

If the first symptoms of influenza occur, it is possible to take antiviral drugs, which will help avoid the appearance of the flu symptoms and strengthen your immunity. The antiviral drugs can be taken repeatedly and for prevention, as they are entirely safe for the body.

The adherence to all recommendations and constant control of the body will help you gain good results in the struggle against seasonal influenza and enjoy the winter holidays.