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Flu Season: Protecting Your Child in Cincinnati, OH

What is the flu?

The flu, more formally known as influenza, is a respiratory illness that is caused by many different strains of the flu virus. The flu is not related to the common cold.

What are the symptoms and complications of the flu?

The flu typically causes mild to severe symptoms, with rare cases leading to death. Most of the common flu symptoms have a quick onset and can last three to seven days. More serious complications can also occur as a result of the flu virus.

Some common symptoms include:

  • ‍Cough
  • Fatigue or tiredness
  • Fever or feeling feverish (Note: Contrary to popular belief, not everyone gets a fever when infected with the flu.)
  • Headaches
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Sore throat
  • Vomiting and diarrhea (Note: Vomiting and diarrhea are more common in children.)

Some complications that can occur due to the flu virus include:

  • ‍Ear infections
  • Lower respiratory tract infections in the lungs
  • Upper respiratory tract infections in the nasal passages and throat
  • Pneumonia
  • Sinus infections
  • Serious complications, such as myocarditis (inflammation of the heart wall), encephalitis (inflammation of the brain), myositis (inflammation of muscle), and rhabdomyolysis (breakdown of muscle tissue)

Who is at risk of contracting the flu?

Anyone is at risk of getting the flu, but certain populations have a higher risk than others. Generally, people with a weakened or suppressed immune system are more likely to contract the flu. This includes young children, older adults over 65 years old and pregnant women. Additionally, people that suffer from chronic medical conditions, especially those experiencing chronic lung diseases or heart disease, have a higher risk of getting the flu. Also, medications that suppress the immune system increase the likelihood of contracting the flu.

  • ‍Apnea
  • Asthma
  • Chronic cough
  • Chronic lung disease in premature infants
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Noisy breathing
  • Recurring pneumonia
  • Other conditions that may require special medical equipment

When should I consult a pediatric pulmonologist?

Some common reasons to consult a pediatric pulmonologist include:

  • ‍If your child significantly coughs or experiences chronic coughing
  • If your child has to use an albuterol inhaler or daily controller asthma medication on a daily basis
  • If your child experiences numerous respiratory infections or noisy, rattling breathing
  • If your child has been diagnosed with cystic fibrosis or another chronic lung condition.

If you suspect that your child could benefit from the care of a pediatric pulmonologist, you should consult with your child’s pediatrician. Your pediatrician can help you decide if a pediatric pulmonologist would be beneficial to help manage your child’s breathing issues or chronic lung disease.

How can RSVP Home Care help my child’s pediatric pulmonologist?

RSVP Home Care is a home care company in Northern Kentucky that can assist pediatric pulmonologists by supplying respiratory therapists and durable medical equipment. Our respiratory therapists have years of experience helping children manage the symptoms associated with chronic lung or breathing conditions. Additionally, we can provide durable medical equipment for at home care, including ventilators, compressors, nebulizers, suction machines, tracheostomy supplies, cough-assist devices, oxygen concentrators, high pressure oxygen systems and oximeters and probes. Contact us today to see how we can assist your child’s pediatric pulmonologist with fulfilling your child’s treatment plan for chronic lung diseases or breathing issues.

How can I prevent my complex child and myself from getting the flu?

There are a few simple ways to try to prevent contracting the flu. The easiest way is to diligently wash your hands and to avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Additionally, you should cover your nose and mouth when you sneeze or cough. It is also best to avoid contact with people who have the flu. If you do come in contact with sick people, make sure you clean and disinfect the surfaces in your area.

The flu vaccine is also available to help prevent the flu virus. Prior to getting the vaccine, it is very important for you to consult with your physician or your child’s pediatric pulmonologist.

My child and I have the flu, now what?

If you or your complex child has contracted the flu, the first order of business is to consult with your physician or your child’s pediatric pulmonologist to discuss a treatment plan. At the onset of symptoms, you should stay home and avoid contact with other people for at least 24 hours. It is also important to get plenty of rest and to remain hydrated by drinking fluids. Any fevers or headaches should be treated according to your doctor’s recommendations. You can also help ease some of the breathing symptoms by running a humidifier or breathing in steam. In some cases, your doctor may want to prescribe antiviral drugs to help your body fight the flu virus.

If your complex child is experiencing breathing difficulties as a result of the flu, the Northern Kentucky respiratory therapists at RSVP Home Care can help provide relief. Contact us today to see how we can assist you with flu prevention and treatment in Northern Kentucky.

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Office Location

4300 Boron Drive
Covington, KY  41015

Phone:      859-727-7600
Toll Free: 877-504-7338
Fax:          859-727-7601

Hours

Monday - Friday: 8:30 am - 5:00 pm

If you need assistance after hours with emergent equipment needs, please call our business number and the Respiratory Therapist on call will be contacted. PLEASE REMEMBER, IF YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY-DIAL 911.

Service Area

Serving Ohio, Kentucky, & Indiana within a 70-mile radius of our office.

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