Flu Information – Facts About Flu You Should Know

The flu, is an illness of the respiratory system caused by a virus. Flu can come on suddenly and last for 7-10 days and can make you feel very ill and weak. Avoiding the flu, therefore, becomes very important.

How can you avoid the flu:

The flu is spread when droplets from an infected person touches something like a door knob or other object or if they cough or sneeze while they are near you and you touch an item that they have handled. It is very easy to contract the flu if you are exposed to large groups of people, especially during an outbreak or during prime flu season. Any area where there are large crowds–for example, universities or schools, day care centers, large office buildings, concerts or other public events, nursing homes or public transportation. It is very easy to spread the flu to other people up to a week before you are aware that you are ill, and if you have a fever, this makes you even more contagious.

To Avoid the flu, you should stay away from large crowds, especially if there is an outbreak of the flu in your area. Hand washing, but only if done properly, is one of the most important things you can do to avoid the flu and other contagious illnesses. Practice good hand washing tips by making sure that you wash your hands thoroughly very often throughout the day and especially after touching objects such as doorknobs, shopping carts or other objects. You should wash your hands for at least 10-15 seconds and then rinse well and dry with a clean paper towel or air dry. Other tips for avoiding getting sick from the flu would include getting enough rest, keeping your body properly hydrated (i.e.: drinking enough water), making sure that you are eating healthy foods, including lots of fresh fruits and vegetables, and exercising regularly.

There are also masks that can be worn while you are in public places that can reduce your risk of contracting the flu virus. Choosing an appropriate mask for protection is important and there are many factors to take into consideration when buying a mask for flu protection. We will discuss this in a follow up article involving flu protection.

Strains of the Flu Virus:

There are three strains of the influenza virus:
Type A:
Type B:
Type C:

All cause flu, however, type A causes large outbreaks that happen every few years. Type B is involved typically in more regional occurrences and in a smaller fashion, and type C has mild symptoms and is a less common variety of the flu than either A or B.

How the Flu Virus Changes:

In the case of the type C virus, it is generally stable, however, strains A and B mutate or change each year. That is the reason why new outbreaks occur every few years. Locally, outbreaks of flu that are very strong, can happen every few years.
The flu can make you feel very weak and ill, and it is not a pleasant experience for you or your family members to contract the flu virus. But knowing some general information about the flu virus can help you and your family learn some tips for preventing the flu virus that can help you stay healthy during the entire year.