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Flu Symptoms in Children

Pediatrics and Child Health

Flu symptoms in children are most commonly seen in the fall and winter months which are the flu seasons. The flu is caused by a virus and is very contagious. When children are spending most of their time indoors and are in close contact with several others, as is the case in the class room or day care facility, chances are pretty good that they may come home with the flu. Their flu symptoms might include chills, fever, sneezing, coughing, runny nose, congestion, and fatigue. A child might also experience nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and complain of abdominal pain. Some complications of the flu are sinus or ear infection and pneumonia.

Flu Symptoms Prevention with Vaccine

Considering those flu symptoms of course you want to do all you can to prevent your child from getting the illness. You should discuss the flu vaccine with your child’s pediatrician. The flu shot is recommended for children from 6 months to 19 years. It contains a dead virus and should have only mild side effects if any at all. The flu shot may leave soreness at the site of the injection and there might be body aches and a low grade fever. These side effects should only last a day or two after getting the flu shot. After about two weeks your child will have begun to develop antibodies to the flu.

There is also a vaccine given in the form of a nasal spray called LAIV which stands for ‘live attenuated influenza vaccine’ and can be given to children over the age of two years. There may some side effects from this live virus though it is weakened and these should be mild. The child may experience a runny nose, headache, mild fever and achiness.

Other than getting a flu shot, good hand washing can really improve your child’s chances to avoid catching the flu and suffering from those nasty flu symptoms. Teach your child to sneeze and cough into their sleeve or under the neckline of their shirt while turning away from others. By teaching our children these simple ways to protect themselves and others from getting infected we’re doing our part to eliminate flu symptoms.

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