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Seasonal Flu

Seasonal Flu and your preparedness

Knowledge is your best defence: The best way to reduce the impact of an influenza (flu) pandemic is to protect yourself, your family and friends, stay informed and provide support to others.

Seasonal influenza or the flu is a common and highly contagious respiratory disease that affects the nose, throat and lungs. Yearly exposure to existing strains of the flu provides some level of immunity to seasonal flu.

Here is a flu prevention checklist

  • Wash your hands frequently
  • Keep your hands away from your face
  • Cough and sneeze into your arm, not your hand
  • Keep common surface areas clean and disinfected
  • Eat healthy foods and stay physically active
  • If you get sick, stay home
  • Get vaccinated

Symptoms of the flu virus

  • Almost always: Sudden onset of cough and fever
  • Common: Fatigue, headache, muscle aches, decreased appetite, sore throat, runny nose
  • Sometimes: Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea

If you develop the following symptoms, you need to see a health care provider right away:

  • Shortness of breath, rapid or difficulty breathing
  • Chest pain
  • Bluish or grey skin colour
  • Bloody or coloured mucus/spit
  • Sudden dizziness or confusion
  • Severe or persistent vomiting
  • High fever lasting more than three days
  • Low blood pressure

Additional symptoms to watch for in children:

  • Not drinking enough fluids or eating
  • Not waking up or interacting
  • Irritability; not wanting to play or be held

Plan ahead and get prepared
Speak with family, friends and neighbours to figure out how you might help each other during the flu season.
Have a backup plan if child care facilities or schools close and you must continue working.
Put together a home preparedness kit before anyone gets sick. When you are sick or caring for someone who is sick, you may not be able to get groceries or health supplies.
Your kit should contain non-perishable food such as canned soups, frozen or canned juices, breakfast cereals, and easy dinners such as spaghetti and tomato sauce. Be sure to include various health and cleaning supplies such a thermometer, hand soap, pain and fever medication. Include important contact information such as health care facilities, doctors, pharmacies and caregivers.
This safety tip was written in collaboration with the Public Health Agency of Canada- Influenza Information and Peel Public Health- Let's Beat the Flu, using information from their websites.






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