What is influenza (also called “the flu”)?
Influenza is a highly contagious disease that infects the nose, throat, and lungs and can cause moderate to severe illness, including death.
When does flu occur?
The flu virus is more active in the fall and winter months, but cases are reported all year long.
What are the symptoms of flu?
People with flu may have:
- Sore throat
- Runny or stuffy nose
- Body aches
- Fatigue (tiredness)
- Vomiting or diarrhea (more common in kids than adults)
How does flu spread?
The flu spreads easily from person to person by coughing and sneezing, sometimes before someone even knows they’re sick.
How do you prevent the flu?
The best way to prevent the flu is to get a yearly flu vaccine, as soon as it’s available. Also: wash your hands, cover your cough, and stay home when you’re sick.
You can read the rest of the WSDOH’s FAQs about the flu here.
See your Doctor!
If you or someone you know has severe flu-like symptoms, contact your doctor, nurse, or clinic as soon as possible. The best way to know for sure is for a healthcare provider to swab your throat and have a lab confirm the diagnosis.
Source: Washington State Department of Health, visit the website.