Technology.am (Aug. 14, 2009) — H1N1 — also known as swine flu hit in April but continues to wreak havoc locally and globally.
University of Cincinnati infectious diseases expert Judith Feinberg says that usually influenza is most dangerous for the very young and the very old—groups that have weaker immune systems and are unable to fight off infections.
Feinberg says that usually influenza is most dangerous for the very young and the very old—groups that have weaker immune systems and are unable to fight off infections.
But with H1N1, there is no built-up immunity in the population, and she predicts there will be more young, healthy adults struck by the illness.
“H1N1 is an unusual flu strain, with elements of avian, swine and human influenza,” she says.
But how do the symptoms of H1N1 differ from those of the regular flu?
Primarily, influenza is airborne, and both viruses enter your body through the mucous membranes of your nose and mouth.
Symptoms for both H1N1 and seasonal influenza seem to be quite similar and include:
• Sore throat
• Muscle ache and soreness
• Vomiting and diarrhea linked more closely to H1N1 but can be experienced with either bug.
The very important thing is to keep your hands germ-free with frequent washing. In addition to washing hands frequently, there are other ways to take everyday actions to stay healthy, including:
• Covering your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze and throwing the tissue in the trash after you use it.
• Avoiding touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
• Staying home if you get sick.
• Seeing your general practitioner as soon as possible if you experience symptoms to avoid further spread of the illness.
In late July, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices said those first in line for the H1N1 vaccine should be in order of importance.
• Pregnant women
• Health care workers in contact with infants under 6 months old and emergency medical services workers.
• Children and young adults, ages 6 months through 24 years of age.
• People under 65 years old with underlying medical conditions.