children flu

Did you know that children are 1.5 times to 3 times more likely than adults to get the flu? Research shows that children age 6 to 10 have the highest flu infection rates. This high infection rate is thought to occur because, compared with adults, children have had less lifetime exposure to influenza and therefore do not have as much natural immunity built up. Add to this close contact with each other in school, which increases children’s risk of getting and spreading the virus. Luckily, there are flu treatments that can shorten the duration of the flu — or help them avoid it altogether. Be on the lookout for flu symptoms so you can act fast:
  • Rapid onset of high fever
  • Dry cough
  • Chills
  • Muscle aches
  • Headaches
  • Younger children have a greater tendency for high fevers and stomach problems such as nausea, vomiting or diarrhea.
School children tend to catch the flu early in the season and are infectious longer than adults. Research shows that the occurrence of flu in families with school children is double that of families without children in school or daycare. 

What is Swine Influenza?

Swine Influenza (swine flu) is a respiratory disease of pigs caused by type A influenza virus that regularly causes outbreaks of influenza in pigs. Swine flu viruses cause high levels of illness and low death rates in pigs. Swine influenza viruses may circulate among swine throughout the year, but most outbreaks occur during the late fall and winter months similar to outbreaks in humans. The classical swine flu virus (an influenza type A H1N1 virus) was first isolated from a pig in 1930.

about influenza
How Well Do You Know the Flu?Many of us have had the flu at least once in our lives, some much more than others, but not many of us know exactly what the flu is. Sure, we know that it causes us to miss school or work, and we know that it causes aches and pains, but why is that?

This section will discuss the flu, so you can learn why you get it, when you’re most likely to get it and how to tell when it’s not the flu at all, but a case of the common cold. And remember to always know your treatment and prevention options, so if it is the flu, you can be prepared.

What is the Flu?The flu, more scientifically known as influenza, is a highly contagious respiratory infection caused by influenza viruses. The influenza virus usually enters the body through mucus membranes in the mouth, nose or eyes. When a person with the flu coughs or sneezes, the virus then becomes airborne and can be inhaled by anyone nearby.

In most communities, school-age children are the first age group to get the flu. They then carry it into their home and to places where they interact with other kids, such as after-school activities. The flu virus will usually be prominent during the fall and winter, the time of year typically known as "fle seasons"

Some people, such as older adults, young children, and people with specific health conditions, are at high risk for serious flu complications. In extreme cases, complications can lead to death. On average in the United States each year: 5% to 20% of the population gets the flu; more than 200,000 people are hospitalized from flu complications; and about 36,000 people die from the flu. Read more about the impact of the flu.

How to Know If You Have the Flu While it’s pretty normal to mistake the flu for another ailment such as a cold or just “feeling under the weather,” it’s important to know the difference — because if it’s the flu, the sooner you can get help from your doctor, the better.

If you’re not sure it’s the flu you have, keep these things in mind. Flu symptoms generally appear 1 to 3 days after exposure to the virus. The onset of symptoms often seems sudden: people describe the feeling “like they’ve been hit by a truck.” Flu symptoms can be mild or severe — and if they’re mild can become severe without much notice. Be aware of your body and monitor your body temperature.

The common symptoms of the flu include:

  • Fever (usually high)
  • Headache
  • Muscle aches
  • Chills
  • Extreme tiredness
  • Dry cough
  • Runny nose may also occur but is more common in children than adults
  • Stomach symptoms, such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea, may also occur but are more common in children than adults

You don’t need to experience all of these symptoms to have the flu. If you have one or two, it’s recommended that you see your doctor. We’ve prepared a list of helpful questions to ask your doctor to help you make the most of your visit.

And, of course, sometimes the symptoms you’re experiencing are simply signs of a cold. To get a better understanding of the differences between the cold and flu, see Cold or the Flu?