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Flu season continues on San Juan and Orcas Island

Flu season is lasting longer than it has in decades, according to San Juan County Health Department.

Three regions in the U.S. are reporting elevated levels of flu including one pediatric influenza related death last week.  Flu incidences continue to rise on San Juan and Orcas Island. The flu appears to be contained on Lopez Island

County Personal Health Manager Susan Leff urges islanders to get vaccinated, and for parents to be extra careful when treating their children for fever.

Health officials ask people to take common sense measures to protect themselves, but also be on the lookout for symptoms that indicate serious problems.

The health department recommends anyone with flu-like symptoms to stay home and rest, avoid close contract with healthy people, drink plenty of water and other clear liquids to prevent fluid loss like dehydration, and to treat fever and coughs with over the counter medicine.

Islanders that are pregnant or have a medical condition that creates a higher risk of flu complications, should check with a doctor and see if treatments with an antiviral medicine is needed.

It’s important to contact a medical professional if you or your child shows any of these signs of dehydration:

 

•           Sunken soft spot on top of your infants head

•           Diarrhea or vomiting in infants

•           Baby seems less active or more irritable than normal

•           Fewer tears when crying or not making any tears

•           Child has a fever for more than 12 hours and is not able to drink fluids, throwing up, or having diarrhea

•           Child is irritable or cranky, hard to wake up, have little energy, appears dull or weak (not interacting)

•           Fast breathing or trouble breathing

•           Flu symptoms improve but then return with a fever and worse cough

•           Fever with a rash

 

In adults signs of dehydration are:

•           Not able to produce tears when crying

•           Less than normal amount of urine

•           Dry skin, mouth, or eyes

•           Fast beating heart

•           Shortness of breath

•           Pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen

•           Sudden dizziness

•           Confusion

•           Flu like symptoms that improve but then return with fever or worse cough

 

For more info, call San Juan County Health Department at 378‑4474 or your health care provider if you have any questions.

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