What to Do When a Child Gets the Flu

Alright the
first child in Maryland has died from the flu this year. That’s right. The
Health Department won’t give any details on the child or where the death happened
right now, but health care workers say it really is a wake up call to help better
protect our families and our communities. ABC 2 News Nadia Singh live at an
urgent care tonight with more. Nadia? Well Kelly, urgent cares like this
Patient First in Towson, emergency rooms, doctors offices — they’ve been seeing
waves of people coming in complaining about the flu and flu-like symptoms. And
doctors I spoke to today, they’re saying, parents need to understand the
signs and symptoms in order to have their children treated properly. Patients
come in with a cough and cold, with a low-grade fever, when we check with
testing, it comes positive. Then the child may go home, their fever spikes, then they
head to the ER. But Dr. Jay Gopal says there are specific things to look for
that determines how to care for your child. If the temperature is too high,
like 104, 105, call your doctor. If the child is breathing faster, call your
doctor. The child is not able to drink any fluids and is completely diffusing or
taking less fluids, call your doctor. But you have to hit the hospital if symptoms
worsen. Respiratory distress and the child is still not taking much of fluids and
getting dehydrated. Health care providers everywhere say they’re seeing people pay
more attention to the flu. Because of the amount of media that is promoting this
flu season, we are seeing it more of an influx of the complaints of flu-like
symptoms. And with the news of the state’s first pediatric victim this year,
it’s expected to get worse. Now that it is kind of hit a little bit
closer to home, just making sure, again, diligent about having their children
being seen, tested, treated. It is the peak of flu season. Just today Gopal saw 36
children complaining of feeling sick. Of that 15 of them likely had the flu. There
is a more panic in a patient’s mind something terrible is going to happen
and we are seeing waves of patients. This year’s vaccine isn’t as effective, but
it’s better than nothing and getting it twice won’t keep
your child safer. This flu vaccine is available from September or October. And
if they have gotten that, they don’t that is the second flu vaccine is not going
to be helpful. The best thing to do is watch your children and be proactive.
Follow up with their pediatricians and just making sure that they’re diligent
and looking for worsening symptoms and, you know, just not taking that anything
too lightly. You know, Jamie and Kelly, we always hear
about hand-washing and using things like sanitizer and while those are good tips
to keep the flu at bay, doctors are saying one of the best things you can do
if your child is sick with the flu or anything else: keep them home, keep them
away from their siblings, and other people. That’s gonna prevent the spread
of the flu the best. Head to our website ABC2news.com.
We have an entire flu section there with a lot more tips. For now, I’m live in
Baltimore County, Nadia Singh, ABC 2 News All right more tips they send you here,
you know the most common flu symptoms, they have the cough, the sore throat, the
muscle, the body aches, the fatigue, your headaches, and a runny nose. And remember,
make sure you stay home or keep your kids home 24 to 48 hours after the fever
has subsided to prevent the spread. Now ABC 2 is working for you to keep your
family safe and healthy during the flu season. Tomorrow we’re going to have a
Day of Answers where we’re going to talk to doctors and other professionals about
ways to prevent the disease, best ways to treat it if you do get sick, and what you
need to know to keep your home as germ-free as possible. We invite you to
follow us on Facebook, watch us on air, starting with Good Morning, Maryland
first thing in the morning for a Day of Answers on the flu outbreak.

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