HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP)– If you’ve ever had the flu, the memory of how sick you felt during it, is tough to forget.
“You feel like you’ve been run over by a truck, and you don’t really have the energy to do anything,” Christine O’Brien, from Heath, described to 22News.
Typically the flu comes along with a fever, chills, muscle aches, a sore throat or cough, and a headache. Doctors advise when you start feeling symptoms of the flu its important you drink lots of fluids and get plenty of rest.
If your flu symptoms persist beyond the normal two to five day span, or include vomiting, putting you at risk for dehydration, it’s time to call your doctor. You may be able to get an anti-viral medication, something like Tamiflu.
Different from antibiotics which kill the bacteria that’s making you sick, anti-viral medications help cut down on the length of time your symptoms last.
Doctor Loren Ver Po told 22News anti-viral medications are particularly important for certain people at risk for complications from the flu, like pneumonia, that could lead to hospitalization.
“Those who have chronic medical problems of heart problems, lung problems like asthma or COPD, or those who have chronic kidney diseases,” Dr. Loren Ver Po, from Holyoke Medical Center, told 22News.
He added to that list anyone 65 years or older, young children, or those with already weakened immune systems should see their doctor for treatment as soon as flu symptoms start.
Dr. Po also said the sooner the anti-viral medication can be taken the more effective it will be.
The CDC says anti-viral medications are not replacements for getting a flu vaccine, adding while the vaccine may vary in its effectiveness it is still the best way to prevent getting the flu.