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Health Fitness, Wellbeing & Visor

 

Expert Advice On Staying Health Fitness, Wellbeing & Visory This Flu Season

While fears about a bird flu pandemic have grown recently overseas, an increasing number of people right here at home are falling ill.

Expert Advice On Staying Health Fitness, Wellbeing & Visory This Flu Season

While fears about a bird flu pandemic have grown recently overseas, an increasing number of people right here at home are falling ill with this winter's seasonal flu bug. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), flu incidence has been on the rise since late December, spreading from the Southwest corner of the U.S. and making its way eastward.

Seasonal flu affects up to 40 million Americans every year. Influenza and its complications are responsible for an average of 200,000 hospitalizations and 36,000 deaths annually in the U.S.

"Many Americans see flu as a nuisance rather than a serious Health Fitness, Wellbeing & Visor threat," said Donald Perlman, M.D., who specializes in treating respiratory illnesses at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center in New Jersey. "While concern about the avian flu is understandable, the Health Fitness, Wellbeing & Visor risks associated with seasonal flu are much higher for the average American than the bird flu threat."

Despite the upswing in flu incidence, there are two fewer treatment options this season. The CDC has recommended against the use of amantadine and rimantadine for the prevention and treatment of influenza for the remainder of the 2005-2006 flu season due to increasing resistance levels. Instead, CDC recommends that oseltamivir (Tamiflu) and zanamivir (Relenza) be prescribed if an antiviral medication is needed.

Dr. Perlman, an assistant clinical professor at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ), emphasizes that flu is a preventable disease, and offers advice and simple measures everyone can take to help control its spread:

Prevention:

• Get Vaccinated: Vaccine is the first line of defense. Visit www.cdc.gov for vaccine locations in your area.

• Wash Hands Frequently: Germs are often spread when a person touches something contaminated followed by the eyes, nose or mouth. Wash hands often for 20 seconds with warm, soapy water.

• Practice Respiratory Etiquette: Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing, to reduce the chances of spreading the virus to others.

• Monitor Flu Outbreaks in Your Area: Stay informed of when the flu hits your city by logging on to www.flustar.com, which provides updates on flu outbreaks on a regional and nationwide basis.

If You Get Sick:

• Know the Difference Between Cold and Flu: Many people are confused by cold and flu symptoms. Above are some tips to help you tell the difference.

• See Your Doctor at First Signs of Flu: Early diagnosis and treatment can help lessen the time you are sick, so see your doctor at the first sign of flu symptoms. He or she may prescribe an antiviral medication such as Tamiflu, which can reduce the duration and severity of flu symptoms if taken within 48 hours of symptom onset. Antiviral medications can also be used to help prevent the spread of flu within a household or workplace if taken within two days of exposure to the influenza virus.

• Stay Home: Be considerate of others. If possible, stay home from work, school and errands when you are sick.

As the threat of bird flu grows overseas, seasonal flu, which affects 40 million Americans each year, packs a punch in the U.S.

 

Bird Flu: An Introduction To The Latest Global Health Fitness, Wellbeing & Visor Threat

The World Health Fitness, Wellbeing & Visor Organization recently sounded a global Health Fitness, Wellbeing & Visor alarm in response to bird flu, which is an infectious diseases that affects only birds...until recently. What exactly is bird flu?

bird flu, avian flu, h5n1, Health Fitness, Wellbeing & Visor

The World Health Fitness, Wellbeing & Visor Organization (WHO) recently sounded a global Health Fitness, Wellbeing & Visor alarm in response to a new threat that has been emerging in several regions, particularly Asia. This threat is the avian influenza, more commonly known as bird flu, which is an infectious diseases that affects only birds...until recently.

What exactly is bird flu?

Bird flu is an infectious disease caused by several subtypes of the Influenza A virus, which is known to affect birds, particularly migratory birds, ducks and chickens. Bird flu is also reportedly known to affect pigs and ducks although these animals only serve as carriers and are not known to exhibit symptoms of the disease. Migratory birds, in general, are equipped to handle the virus. They do not get sick but they have the ability to contaminate other birds in areas they migrate to. This is crucial factor in the spread of disease because migratory birds travel great distances, often from one country to another.

When did bird flu start?

Bird flu is not a new disease. First discovered in Italy in 1878, it was initially called “fowl plague” because it largely affected chicken livestock. However, it was only in 1955 that the Influenza A virus is the cause of bird flu. Since then, several subtypes of the Influenza A virus has been discovered in about a hundred bird species.

According to research, wild waterfowls, particularly ducks, are the most common carriers of the disease. The ducks, however, do not get sick from it. It was discovered that gulls, waterfowls and shorebirds are natural “reservoirs” of the bird flu virus. These animals appear to have developed antibodies to fight against the virus. Other bird species, however, have not developed this immunity to the virus.

Symptoms of bird flu

Birds with mild forms of avian influenza can exhibit ruffled feathers and poor egg production. Birds with advanced or extreme forms of the disease may show signs of excessive shedding, respiratory infections and a swollen head. When the disease worsens, death usually comes within 48 hours. This is because bird flu not only affects the respiratory systems of birds but also other tissues and organs, causing major hemorrhaging.

History of bird flu outbreaks

In the 1980s, bird flu outbreaks in chickens and birds occurred in Scotland, England, Canada, Germany, United States, Australia and Ireland. Again in the 1990s the same countries, with the exception of Germany and Scotland, had outbreaks. This time, Italy, Pakistan, Hong Kong, the Netherlands and Chile joined them. However, these outbreaks were small-scale; and highly pathogenic outbreaks are rare.

Then in 1997, a major outbreak of bird flu occurred in Hong Kong, which left 18 people infected and six people killed. In response to the outbreak, the Hong Kong government killed Hong Kong’s entire poultry population, which was estimated at 1.5 million. Many believe that this rapid response to the bird flu outbreak was the best solution and helped avert it from becoming a pandemic.

To determine if a bird flu virus is highly pathogenic, eight chickens between four and eight weeks old are inoculated with the infectious virus. If 75 percent of the samples (six chickens) die within eight days, the virus is considered to be very pathogenic. In addition, a highly pathogenic virus will show a distinctive sequence of amino acids located at the cleavage site, the HA part of the chain.

 

Simple Steps Can Keep Families Health Fitness, Wellbeing & Visory During Cold and Flu

With the flu vaccine shortage, parents are searching for answers on how to keep their children Health Fitness, Wellbeing & Visory during the cold and flu season.

Simple Steps Can Keep Families Health Fitness, Wellbeing & Visory During Cold and Flu

With the flu vaccine shortage, parents are searching for answers on how to keep their children Health Fitness, Wellbeing & Visory during the cold and flu season.

Many parents confuse the flu with a rotavirus infection. The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by the influenza virus that causes symptoms such as high fever, headache, dry cough and sore throat.

Rotavirus, often confused with the flu, is characterized by vomiting, diarrhea, fever and abdominal pain. It is more prevalent than the flu in children from 6 months to 5 years old. More than 3 million cases of rotavirus are diagnosed every year, according to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease. Unlike the flu, there is no vaccine currently available for rotavirus.

Parents can teach and practice defensive measures to decrease the chances of infection and keep their children Health Fitness, Wellbeing & Visory this season.

Because germs and viruses tend to stay on the hands, frequently washing hands, covering the mouth and nose when sneezing, using hand sanitizer, and using disposable diapers for infants can help prevent the spread of illnesses among friends and family members.

It also is important for parents to stock up on the necessities to fight the flu and rotavirus head-on and to keep surfaces clean, especially those on which food is prepared, such as countertops and tables.

One of the primary challenges for children who have rotavirus is the threat of dehydration. When vomiting or diarrhea occur, excessive amounts of fluid and electrolytes can be lost. Giving an oral electrolyte solution formulated especially for children at the first sign of infection can help reduce a child's risk of dehydration.

"Common household beverages like sports drinks, soda and juices contain large amounts of sugar which can draw water into the intestines and away from the rest of the body, making diarrhea worse and increasing the risk of dehydration," said Dr. Robert Murray, a professor of gastroenterology and pediatrics at the Ohio State University and a medical director with Abbott's Ross Products Division. "I cannot stress enough the importance of staying well-hydrated during an episode of diarrhea and vomiting. Drinks such as Pedialyte are an excellent source for re-hydration since it is formulated specifically for young children."




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