Dealing With The Flu

When To Head To The ER

Don’t leave it too late!

The flu season is upon us, and that leaves millions of people scrambling to the nearest clinic to get a flu shot. If you choose to forego the flu shot, or if you simply don’t get to it in time, then you may find yourself facing the flu. While the flu is never a walk in the park, it’s sometimes more or less dangerous than you may think. If you find yourself dealing with the flu, then you should know when to head to the ER. So, when is it time to leave the home remedies at home and head to the hospital for professional help? Consider these points when making that decision:

Dehydration. One of the most important things to do during a bout with the flu is to stay amply hydrated. If you can’t seem to get down enough fluids (this problem is most common in children), then you should head to the hospital. In children, look for infrequent diaper wetting and tearless crying.

Change in fever. Flu is generally accompanied by fever, which should subside temporarily with the use of a fever medication. However, there are certain changes in fever that should be noted, as they warrant a visit to the emergency room. If the fever co-occurs with a rash, or if your fever subsides for a day or two, only to return again, then you might have a secondary infection.

Breathing irregularities. In both adults and children, this is a dangerous condition that signals the need to head to the ER. Breathing irregularities include things like strained breathing, difficulty breathing, shallow breathing, hurried breathing, and painful breathing.

Disorientation. If you are feeling not like yourself (outside of the obvious flu symptoms, of course), then it is a good idea to head to the hospital. Disorientation might include things like dizziness, confusion, and excessive drowsiness – all symptoms that could necessitate a visit to the ER.

Changes in behavior. If it is your child that is sick, then you should keep in mind that children can’t always articulate what they’re feeling. Therefore, you should look out for changes in behavior that could indicate a need to take a trip to the ER. For example, if your child is too cranky to be held or accept affection, won’t wake up, or is unresponsive to communication, you should head to the hospital right away. For many people who get the flu, staying in bed with a water bottle and some aspirin is all they might need to get through it. However, it is important to keep in mind that the flu also takes thousands of lives a year. Play it safe this flu season by monitoring yourself for these ER-worthy symptoms.

About the Author: Robbie Redway and his wife are both healthcare workers who are astounded by the severity of this year’s flu season. When he’s not working at a health clinic, Robbie can often be found researching the symptoms of candida and how to treat this common infection that impacts so many of all genders and races.