Influenza is a viral infection that attacks our respiratory system ie.our nose, throat and lungs.
At first, the flu may seem like a common cold with a runny nose, sneezing and sore throat. But colds usually develop slowly, whereas the flu tends to come on suddenly.
Common signs and symptoms of the flu include:
Influenza viruses travel through the air in droplets when someone with the infection coughs, sneezes or talks. One can inhale the droplets directly, or one can pick up the germs from an object such as a telephone or computer keyboard and then transfer them to their eyes, nose or mouth.
People with the virus are likely contagious from about a day before symptoms appear until about five days after they start. Children and people with weakened immune systems may be contagious for a slightly longer time.
Influenza viruses are constantly changing, with new strains appearing regularly. If one have had influenza in the past, their body has already made antibodies to fight that specific strain of the virus. If future influenza viruses are similar to those one have encountered before, either by having the disease or by getting vaccinated, those antibodies may prevent infection or lessen its severity. But antibody levels may decline over time.
Also, antibodies against influenza viruses one have encountered in the past may not protect from new influenza strains that can be very different viruses from what one had before.
Factors that may increase our risk of developing the flu or its complications include:
Pneumonia is one of the most serious complications. For older adults and people with a chronic illness, pneumonia can be deadly.
ACONITE : Useful for influenza with sudden onset of fever with chilliness.There is throbbing pulse and great restlessness. Recommended when influenza is caused due to anxiety, suppressed perspiration or exposure to dry, cold winds.
EUPATORIUM PERF : Useful for influenza with intense aching limbs, as if the bones were breaking.Given when patient cannot move for the fear of pain.There is shivering and chill in the back that begins between 7 to 9 am. There may be vomiting of bile like that in the case of break fever dengue.
BRYONIA ALBA : Indicated when the fever sets in on getting suddenly chilled after getting heated.Recommended when patient wants to lie down still and needs to be left alone, the tongue is coated white with thirst for water or cold fluids. Pain are better by pressure but worse on movement.
RHUSTOX : Useful for influenza with bruished, lame and painful limbs on attempting to move but the pain and soreness pass with continuous movement.Given When the patient becomes tired again, the pains reappear.Given when Illness may start with dampness and on getting wet while perspiring.
PYROGENIUM : Useful for agonizing pain in the lower limbs and the lumbar region, especially the thick muscles.Suitet to patient who is extremely chilly, no fire can give enough warmth.Helpful when tongue has a clean varnished look, and the pulse is out of proportion to the fever.
BAPTISIA : Useful for influenza for sudden onset that runs rapidly to a stupid typhoid state. Patient has a besotted appearance, red but dull.There is sudden attack of violent diarrhoea and vomiting associated with great prostration
People with flu can be infectious from the day before their symptoms start. Adults are most infectious in the first 3-5 days of their illness. Children can remain infectious for 7-10 days. Young children and people with weakened immune systems may be infectious for longer
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