First Hawaiian Bank

Prevent the Flu from Hitting You!

posted on February 6, 2013

What is the Flu?

The FLU is a shortened term for influenza, a viral infection of the respiratory tract. FLU symptoms are similar to those of the common cold - fever, body aches, runny nose, sore throat and non-productive cough. Abdominal symptoms such as nausea, vomitting, and diarrhea may occur in addition to the respiratory symptoms, especially in children. The FLU, however, is much more serious than the common cold. Symptoms are usually much more serious and cause greater discomfort and incapacitation which often leads to more serious illnesses such as pneumonia and death. An estimated 36,000 FLU deaths occur each year in the U.S. More than 90% of the deaths occurred among people 65 or older.

Causes of the Flu

Two viruses, Influenza A and Influenza B, are responsible for most of the FLU outbreaks. They enter a person from direct contract with airborne droplets produced when infected persons cough or sneeze (especially in enclosed spaces). A person may also become infected from contact with objects contaminated by these droplets or after being touched by the infected persons. Influenza viruses have been found to survive on contaminated surfaces and objects between 2 to 8 hours, and are thus, highly communicable.

Tips to Protect You During Flu Season1

  • Avoid close contact with other people who are sick.

  • If you are experiencing signs or symptoms of the flu, stay home from work.

  • Use a tissue to cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing.

  • Frequent hand washing.

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth after touching contaminated objects.

  • Get restful sleep.

  • Drink plenty of fluids.

  • Make healthy food choices.

  • Manage your stress appropriately.

If you have any questions in regards to the information contained in this article, contact Kuakini Health System's Marketing and Public Relations Office at 547-9168.

1Influenza, http://www.kuakini.org/HealthWellness/Intouch.asp?id=180.

* The medical information on this site is provided as an information resource only, and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes. The information on this webpage does not constitute medical, nursing or other professional health care advice or diagnosis and should not be relied upon for treatment. Please consult your health care provider before making any healthcare decisions or for guidance about a specific medical condition. First Hawaiian Bank expressly disclaims responsibility, and shall have no liability, for any damages, loss, injury, or liability whatsoever suffered as a result of any decision made or action taken based on your reliance on the information contained in this site.

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