How the infection takes place and what is the course of its spread?
- Influenza virus – Infects respiratory tract of pigs, this might cause barking cough, decrease in appetite, nasal secretions, restless behaviour, etc.
- Virus can be transmitted to humans. Found in the year 2009, H1N1 virus is the leading cause of swine flu and another virus H3N2 came under the lens in 2011.
Symptoms are similar to most influenza infections:- Fever, Cough , Nasal Secretions, Fatigue, Headache, etc.
It takes 1 to 4 days for the infection to manifest. Highly contagious, infects others from 1 day before symptoms develop till 7 days after the start of symptoms. Some patients may be contagious for a longer time span.
Who are most vulnerable?
Weakened immune system catches infection soon. For example people with existing diabetes and other immunocompromised conditions, children, also people who are exposed to crowded and unhygienic places.
Is it possible to prevent swine flu?
Symptomatic people should stay at home, avoid crowds, take off from work or school until the infection is no longer transmittable (2 to 3 weeks).
Infected people can wear surgical masks to reduce the amount of droplet spray from coughs and sneezes and throw away contaminated tissues in a covered bin.
What all we can do to prevent catching infection?
- Kill or inactivate virus before it reaches a human cell by using soap & water to clean your hands, washing clothing & a shower will help in this.
- Use an alcohol based hand sanitizer if no water and soap are available.
- Do not touch your mouth, eyes, nose, unless hands are thoroughly washed.
- Avoid crowds, parties where chances of infection are very much.
- Use of surgical masks might prevent 50% of airborne exposures but not against surface droplets.
- VACCINATION is another alternative to go the preventive way.
If a patient is diagnosed with swine flu, she/he has to get treatment from a medical expert, follow all the guidelines, and stay in isolation in order to prevent the spread as well as secondary complications for the self. Secondary bacterial infections may lead to Pneumonia, shortness of breath, seizures, when respiratory support becomes important.
The chances of catching infection minimize to a large extent if we are careful along with being healthy having good immunity levels. Taking all this in account, we realize the worth of undertaking a preventive health check up, to know where our body stands in keeping away and fighting the infections. At DocNok, prevention comes before treatment; it includes making you aware and educate you about the possibilities and precautions living a healthier, happier life.
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