The weather is getting cold. We can see people who get flu (influenza). I also had flu and could not leave from the bed for a weak. During staying in the bed for a weak, I wanted to know more about flu and how can we prevent this flu from our ordinary life.
What is flu?
Influenza is well known as “the flu.” It is an infectious disease of birds and mammals caused by RNA viruses of the family Orthomyxoviridae. The most common symptoms are fever, sore throat, muscle pains, headache, coughing, and general discomfort. However having influenza also forces you to infecting other diseases. Flu can affect the lungs. Seniors old people, young children, and people who have lung or heart diseases, certain chronic health conditions, or weakened immune systems.
Transition passage of flu
Influenza can be spread in three main ways. First is by direct transmission. Influenza can also be transmitted by direct contact with bird droppings or nasal secretions, or through contact with contaminated surfaces. Second is by the airborne route. The most of influenza is transmitted through the air by coughs or sneezes from other people. Air contains the virus and when people breathe, the virus goes into other people’s body. The last is through hand-to-eye, hand-to-nose, or hand-to-mouth transmission. All the routes are from contaminated surfaces or from direct personal contact such as a hand-shake. Especially in the airborne route, the droplets that are small enough for people to inhale are 0.5 to 5 µm in diameter and inhaling just one droplet might be enough to cause an infection. Also influenza survives in airborne with low humidity and a lack of sunlight in winter aiding its survival.
Mechanism of flu
The mechanisms of influenza infection is the inhibition of adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) resulting in lowered cortisol levels. Therefore it will cause fatigue and headache. Also influenza invades cells and the cleavage of the viral hemagglutinin protein can not work normally. The normal structure of the hemagglutinin can only be cleaved by proteases and viruses cannot infect other tissues. However, influenza harms the hemagglutinin structure and infect other tissues in lungs.
How to prevent flu?
How can we prevent from the flu in this cold winter season? For the accurate answer for preventing flu, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend 3 steps to prevent from the flu.
First is take time to get a flu vaccine.
Second is hygiene and actions to stop the spread of germs-washing hands, covering nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze, avoid touching eyes, noses, and mouth
The last step is taking flu antiviral drugs which the doctor prescribed. Wrong antiviral drugs can make illness worse and people have different flu virus, so the antiviral drugs are not always work for every situation.
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