Is your teenager complaining of a runny nose or is she suffering from nasal congestion? Does she have a fever, and does she seem weaker than normal? If you said yes, chances are, your child has the flu. Before you go rushing to the doctor, you can check for flu symptoms in teens. Read our post to learn more about the causes, symptoms, and treatments for flu in teens.
What Is Flu?
The flu or influenza occurs due to a virus that infects your respiratory system. The health condition is contagious, and your teen may suffer from flu after coming in contact with an individual suffering from the flu. The flu usually lasts for about one to three days, but you should visit the doctor for an early recovery (1).
Causes Of Flu In Teens:
The influenza virus is the most prominent cause of flu in teens. The flu occurs due to the influenza virus types A, B, and C. Type A and B viruses cause the seasonal outbreaks of influenza in teens. Type A influenza virus affects many animals while type B virus tends to affect only humans.
Flu most often spreads among teens due to coming in contact with the droplets of an infected person. If the flu affected person coughs or sneezes and if your teen comes in contact with droplets of an infected individual’s phlegm, then she too can suffer from the symptoms of the flu (2).
[ Read: Whooping Cough In Teens ]
Flu Symptoms In Teens:
Symptoms of flu in teenagers are quite apparent such that you can easily identify that your teen is suffering from the flu. Find below a list of common symptoms of flu in teens.
- High fever of about 100 degrees F
- A runny nose or stuffy nose
- A cough, particularly dry cough
- Sore throat
- Body aches
- Muscle aches
- Weakness or fatigue
- Nausea and vomiting in some cases (3)
If your teen exhibits any of these symptoms, she may be suffering from the flu.
Treating Flu In Teens:
Even though symptoms of flu subside in three or four days, you need to seek medical assistance if they are prolonged or if you wish a quick recovery. Here are some effective treatments for influenza in teens:
[ Read: Influenza Vaccine ]
1. Antiviral Medications:
Certain antiviral medicines help reduce the duration of influenza if your teen goes for them within two days after she catches the infection. However, consult your doctor before you give her any antiviral medications. Oseltamivir and Zanamivir are popular antiviral medicines that treat and prevent symptoms of influenza virus type A effectively. Antiviral medications prevent new viruses from escaping the source cells that create them, so they limit the spread of infection in your teen’s body. Zanamivir is available as an inhaled spray and Oseltamivir is available in the form of a pill. Make sure your teen takes these medications in 24 to 48 hours after the breakout of the infection so that the duration of infection reduces by one or three days (4).
You can also use antibiotics, such as Ibuprofen or Aspirin, to treat headaches, muscle aches, and fever resulting due to influenza. Give your teen the right doses of antibiotics as per the doctor’s prescription (5).
3. Take Rest:
Besides medications, it is important to take plenty of rest. Rest quickens your teen’s recovery and helps him get back to normal quickly (6).
4. Drink Plenty Of Fluids:
Drinking fluids helps hydrate your teen’s body and prevents aggravation of the infection and risks of other infections. Give your teen nutritious fresh fruit juices as they will ensure good nutritional intake (7).
Did your teen suffer from the flu at any time? How did you treat it? Share your experiences with other moms. Leave a comment below.
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