May 25, 2024

Swine Flu known as H1N1 virus is another human flu virus.  The virus is transmitted just like the regular flu virus and has similar treatments and symptoms. It is relatively the latest strain of the influenza virus. Origin of the flu is seen in pigs but it spreads from person to person, primarily. Just like other flu strains, it spreads during the flu season. The disease is contagious and spreads through mucus particles and saliva. Thousands of germs spread through the air with just a simple sneeze and linger on surfaces of door knobs, tables etc after which they come in contact with humans.

The disease was common in children aged 5 years and more and young adults, when it emerged first and risk factors of getting the disease remain the same as of today. People suffering from chronic illnesses, adults over 65 years of age, pregnant women, people with compromised immune systems, young adults taking aspirin therapy below the age of 19 and children below 5 years of age are most prone to getting the disease. By eating pork products that are properly cooked, a person cannot catch Swine Flu.

If a flu vaccine is taken yearly, Swine Flu can be prevented. Prevention is the best way of dealing with Swine flu. Virus spread can be prevented with proper hand sanitization and staying away from people infected by the virus to prevent transmission from person to person and not animal to person.

Symptoms of Swine Flu include vomiting, nausea, chills, diarrhea, fever, fatigue, coughing, body aches, sore throat and stuffy or runny nose.

Diagnosis of Swine flu is done by the doctor by taking a sample of fluid from the throat or the nose after which various laboratory and genetic techniques are used for analyzing the swab for the virus.

Unless there is risk of developing complications from the flu, there is no need to see the doctor. Medication for treatment is not needed in most Swine Flu cases. More focus is laid on relieving symptoms and preventing the disease spread to other people. Oseltamivir and Zanamivir are the two oral antiviral drugs highly recommended in Swine Flu treatment. A person if healthy will be able to fight the disease on his or her own if affected by the infection.

Relief from Swine Flu is possible with lots of rest to assist the immune system fight the infection, drinking lots of water, clear juices, soups and other liquids to avoid dehydration and replenishing lost nutrients in the body. To relieve symptoms like sore throat and headache, over the counter pain relievers are also given to the patient. If Swine Flu is severe, it can be fatal otherwise most people with the disease can recover and expect to live a normal life.