Emergency Care for Urgent Situations: Fever / Flu
During flu season, it is highly likely that you, or someone close to you, will contact the flu especially if you are not up to date with your flu shots. It is a pretty common condition and one that afflicts a substantial number of the population every year. In most cases, although you will feel poorly and miserable, a flu and fever is a condition that can be comfortably handled at home with plenty of rest, fluids as well as over-the-counter meds to help with the symptoms that come with it such as fever among others. In most cases, fever and flu should blow over after a week or so and you should be back to your normal routine within no time at all. However, like many other medical conditions, fever and flu may be severe and may require one to seek medical attention. This is where things may get tricky as not only is it important to know the signs that your fever or flu is now an urgent situation, it is also equally as important to know how to react to these signs and where to go to for the best medical care as far as your situation is concerned. This is where this article comes in as it will look to highlight the urgent situations as far as fever and flu is concerned and how to react to them.
The first question you need to ask yourself in cases of fever and flu emergencies is whether you are among the group of people at a higher risk of suffering from flu-related emergencies and complications. These high risk groups include young children and infants, older adults, those with chronic condition such as HIV, diabetes as well as heart, kidney, lung and liver disease and those undergoing cancer treatment or taking immunosuppressant drugs. Pregnant women are also part of the group of folks at a high risk of complications due to fever and flu. If the person in an urgent situation as far as fever or flu is concerned is part of any of the above groups, then they should seek medical attention to be attended to and so that the risk of them suffering complications is reduced. This allows a doctor to prescribe antiviral drugs that are intended to treat your flu and fever and as such ensure that you don’t suffer any unwanted consequences.
In an urgent situation as far as fever or flu is concerned, you should also check if you are presenting with other serious symptoms. Some of the red flags you should watch out for, especially when it comes to flu, include high fever. If you have a fever that is above 105 degrees Fahrenheit, you should seek medical care as soon as possible and you should also do the same if you have a fever that is above 103 degrees Fahrenheit and has been persistent for more than 48 hours. Children should also be taken for medical attention if they have a fever above 104 degrees Fahrenheit or high fever that doesn’t go down even after taking fever reducing medication. Another red flag to look out for other than high fever is difficulty breathing as well as shortness of breath. This could be indicative of pneumonia which is a complication of flu and which is potentially life-threatening. Other red flags include blood in sputum or phlegm, your skin turning blue in color, signs of dehydration or if your flu symptoms appear to get better, only to resurface much worse than before. All these should be a sign that you need to seek medical attention as soon as you can.
Having established the symptoms you are presenting with as far as your fever and flu is concerned, the next thing in such a situation is to know where to go for medical attention. If your symptoms indicate that you should seek medical attention but they are not that severe, then you should call up your primary care physician and book an appointment to go in and see them. Seeing your own doctor has a number of pros such as avoiding waiting lines in a hospital as well as the fact that they know you and your medical history as well as that of your child. If your doctor is unavailable, then you can head over to an urgent care clinic, which are the best option for when you require nonemergency medical attention. However, if you are presenting with symptoms that are medical emergencies, then you should call 911 so that you can be taken to an emergency room. These emergency symptoms include difficulties breathing, chest pain and tightness, high fever, severe vomiting and signs of severe dehydration, dizziness as well as confusion. This is because, these signs are indicative of serious complications from fever and flu and should be taken very seriously. Children who have developed a fever with a rash, are unresponsive or have developed a bluish skin should also be taken to an emergency room as soon as possible.
Hopefully, from the above discussion, you will be able to know how to react when encountered with an urgent situation as far as fever or flu is concerned.