What Nannies & Au Pairs Should Know About the Flu
Controversy swirls about the safety of vaccines, especially about the flu shot. Remedies abound, handed down in families like treasured heirlooms about how to treat the flu.
The flu sickens millions and kills thousands yearly. The flu may threaten all those who come into contact with a stricken individual; even those who may not yet have symptoms.
Prevention is the best tactic to lessen the threat of the flu. Getting a flu shot reduces the chance of contracting the flu by up to 90%, depending on how closely the shot matches the virulent year of the current flu season.
Some fear to take the shot, or have their family vaccinated, because they believe the flu shot causes the ailment. The flu shot is a dead form of the virus that triggers an immune system response but cannot cause the illness.
The risk to the young, elderly, or febrile of catching the flu exceeds the risk from the vaccine. Some people with extreme egg allergy cannot take the flu shot but may be able to use various pills and mists to treat or prevent the flu.
There are no antibiotics, vitamins, minerals, herbs, or homeopathic preparations proven to prevent or treat the flu for adults, children, and infants.
The flu is a serious illness and self-diagnosis complicates the treatment. The aches and pains, the high fever, the profound fatigue, and sudden onset are best treated by a health care professional. The young and the elderly are particularly prone to long –term debilitation from the disease and require prompt medical care
The protection of the flu shot does not carry over from one year to the next since the virus mutates from one year to the next. That fact emphasizes the need for all family members and childcare givers to get a flu shot at the start of each flu season.
The season of peak flu activity usually runs from November through April. If a child is six months old or older during this time period, the child and all caregivers and family members should receive the vaccination or use prescribed sprays or pills. Use of the flu shot does not change the need for proper hygiene, especially careful hand washing.
The flu has the potential to be dangerous, even life threatening. The flu vaccine has a long history of safety and effectiveness. This flu season, protect yourself, the family you work for, your family, and your community -- get the flu shot.
Have you or members of the family you work for caught the flu this year?