Winter is coming and takes it with him flu season: to worry this year in particular is the coexistence of the virus with that of covid 19, whose symptoms can sometimes be identical. It is the first winter without mandatory masks, which have limited the spread of seasonal flu in the past two years: what should we expect from the flu for 2022/2023, especially if they are infected i children? Let’s find out what they are symptoms and how to prevent the contagion. For any doubts or suspicions, we remind you that it is always good to contact doctors, physicians and specialists.
Influenza: it’s booming for children
The latest bulletin of the network of sentinel doctors InfluNet reports that from 14 to 20 November in Italy there was a “noticeable increase” of the “number of cases of flu-like syndromes” for each age group, but especially on children under 5 years old. Il president of Sipps (Italian Society of Preventive and Social Pediatrics) Joseph DiMauro spoke on the influenza situation in children, inviting attention, as reported by Rai News: “The flu is not trivial for children and infants. At the moment the circulation is very high and, likewise, the influx of small patients in our clinics is very high”. Di Mauro also makes an appeal to families, inviting them to prevent the risk of contracting the flu in children: “We have full studies, between colds, fever, flu. Every week we see the numbers grow. In front of this picture I have only one message for parents: let’s vaccinate children”.
Flu symptoms in infants
But how can we recognize the flu in children as early as possible? As for i babiesit is often possible to find cough e cold as main symptoms: it is always good to warn the pediatricianbut in this case it is usually recommended to help the baby breathe better making gods nasal washes or through the use of a nasal aspirator. If he breath of the child it seems difficult or if it develops fever above 38 degrees recommended contact your pediatrician immediatelywho will have to visit the little one to define a diagnosis and indicate a cure.
Flu symptoms in children
As we have seen, the data report a higher incidence of influenza on children under the age of 5: usually the most common symptoms are high fever e respiratory difficultieswhile other common symptoms are cough, sore throat, loss of appetite and general fatigue. In somewhat more serious cases they can also occur nausea, He retched e diarrhea. Usually the flu passes by itself without any particular interventions within 7/10 days, but in the event that the symptoms in children become more serious, it is always advisable to consult a doctor or pediatrician.
Influenza or covid?
For i school-age children it will be easier to get sick and contract the flu, which will mainly be around the desks, thanks also to the fact that the obligation to wear the mask in the classrooms. It is useful, therefore, to understand how to behave when children manifest gods symptoms attributable to the flu, trying to distinguish them from those of the covid 19: in the initial stages they can be very similarbut the presence of very intense sore throat, persistent cough, respiratory distress (such as wheezing and apnea) e gastrointestinal symptomscan direct the diagnosis towards theSARS-CoV-2 infection. To exclude one or the other hypothesis, it is advisable perform the child an antigenic or molecular swab.
How to prevent the flu
WHO and the Ministry of Health advise everyone, not just children, to follow simple rules precautions that reduce the risk of contagion and as a result of falling ill with the flu:
- do the flu vaccine;
- avoid to stay close to sick people;
- avoid from touch each other often eyes, naso o mouth;
- disinfect home surfaces;
- wash your hands often;
- open the windows often for change air.
These tips also apply to limit the contagion from covidand can be associated with other useful indications for strengthen the immune defencesespecially of the most fragile children:
- follow a healthy diet, with seasonal fruit and vegetables;
- consume foods rich in vitamin Cimportant for the prevention of infections;
- evaluate with the pediatrician the taking of probiotics, immunostimulants o supplements;
- evaluate with a herbal medicine expert the prescription of herbal products.
The flu vaccine for the little ones
Joseph DiMauro reiterated the importance of flu vaccine that everyone should undergo, but especially i childrenfollowing the mantra “vaccinate and prevent”, because “it would really be a shame not to vaccinate, also because we have all the weapons, even very practicable ones”. For the children the flu vaccination is “strongly recommended from 6 months to 6 yearseven for those little ones who they have no pathologies and even more so for those who have a chronic disease such as asthma, heart disease, diabetes, or who have recurring respiratory infectionsor they attend kindergartens and schools”.
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The pediatrician wanted to mention that they also exist alternative even less invasive than the vaccine for younger children: “For some years, for children aged 2 and over we are using a highly effective nasal spray flu vaccine which allows you to create a shield against a virus that can cause major problems with a simple medical act that is not annoying for the little ones”. There prevention is crucial as not only i children they can get sick and develop annoying, disabling or even dangerous symptoms, but they can in turn infect other children or the elderly and frail people with whom they come into contact, especially in the family: “In many regions at the moment there is an intense concentration of viruses that are transmitted ‘air to air’ and, if there are 20 children in a classroom – some with coughs, some with colds, some with various viruses – remaining contact throughout the day they get infected with each other very easily. And they bring viruses home, where there are i grandparentslet’s hope fragile for concomitant pathologies, which they get the flu from their grandson”.
Graduated in Communication, Media and Advertising, she holds a Master’s Degree in the Arts of Storytelling thanks to which she likes to define herself as a “scribe”. She has experience in copywriting and is passionate about series…