AyuKarma Ayurveda

Influenza

What is Influenza?

Influenza is a viral infection that attacks the respiratory system, including your nose, throat, and lungs. It is a common flu ut different from common stomach flu viruses that trigger diarrhea and vomiting.

In most cases, the flu gets better on its own. But influenza and its complications can be deadly or life-threatening. Some people have a high risk of developing influenza, including:

  • Children under age 5, especially infants and adults older than age 65
  • Residents of nursing homes and other care facilities
  • Pregnant women and women who have given birth recently
  • Those with weakened immune systems
  • People who have chronic illnesses including diabetes, heart disease, kidney disease, asthma, liver disease, etc.
  • People who have more weight than their body mass index

Influenza is highly contagious, so a person can transmit it while talking or through physical contact, such as shaking hands.

There are four types of influenza viruses: A, B, C, and D. Human influenza A and B viruses can cause seasonal flu epidemics and pandemics each year. Type C is associated with a mild respiratory illness.

Signs and Symptoms

The signs and symptoms of influenza may vary for children and adults.

Influenza symptoms in adults

  • breathing difficulties
  • pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen
  • dizziness, confusion
  • seizures
  • not urinating, which may indicate dehydration
  • severe pain, weakness, and unsteadiness
  • a fever or cough that goes away and relapses again

Influenza symptoms in children

Children may also have similar signs to adults, but additionally, they may also experience signs such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, etc.

Children may also have similar signs to adults, but additionally, they may also experience signs such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, etc.

Children with the following signs need emergency care:

  • Severe breathing issues
  • Changes in the color of the face or lips
  • Chest pain or ribs pulling inward as they breathe
  • Body aches
  • Dehydration, leading to poor urination
  • Lack of alertness, poor concentration
  • A fever above 104°F. Mostly fever goes back and shows bouts of relapse
  • Worsening of medical conditions
  • Delayed growth

Flu symptoms in babies

Flu can be dangerous for babies. If symptoms appear, a parent or caregiver should seek medical help.

A baby with flu may have:

  • A cough
  • A sore throat
  • A runny nose
  • A fever of 100°F or more
  • Persistent vomiting or diarrhea
  • A blue skin color
  • Dehydration

Babies with flu may feel sleepy all day and cry a lot when you try to hold them. If your baby has signs of influenza, it is important that you shall get them to a doctor for a diagnosis.

Causes

Influenza viruses travel through the air in droplets when someone with an ongoing infection coughs or sneezes. As the bacteria may travel in the air droplets, you can catch very easily through contact with the objects such as mobile phone, computer keyboard, mouse, etc., and transfer to your eyes, nose, or mouth.

As the virus is present in the body already, they are highly contagious from about a day before signs appear until five days after the signs are observed.

Those with a weak immune system may be contagious for a long time.

Influenza viruses are constantly changing as new strains appear very often. If you have had influenza, mostly it signifies that you have antibodies to fight the same strain or similar to it. But you may not be protected from a new strain that oughts to be different from the one you got infected with.

Risk Factors

Age: Mostly, it occurs in children under 6 months to 5 years old to adults older than 60.

Living or Working Conditions. People who work with or stay in contact with many other residents staying in nursing homes or hospitals, etc.

A Weakened Immune System. Cancer treatments, anti-rejection drugs, organ transplant, blood cancer, or HIV/AIDS, long term use of steroids, etc., can put your immune system at risk. This can make you more vulnerable to common flu and influenza as well.

Pregnancy. Women are particularly at risk of developing influenza complications, mainly in the second and third trimesters or post-deliveries (up to two weeks after delivering the babies).

Obesity. People with a body mass index of more than 40 are at an increased risk of flu-related complications.

Chronic illnesses. Chronic conditions of the lungs including asthma, heart disease, nervous system disorders, kidney disease, liver or blood disease, metabolic disorders, and airway abnormality, are at an increased risk of influenza.

Ayurvedic treatment for influenza

According to Ayurveda, influenza is a disorder characterized by the imbalance of Kapha and Vata doshas. One is prone to cold when there is an excess Kapha in the body which results in the development of conditions like a runny or stuffy nose or nasal congestion. This aggravation may imbalance the other doshas of the body and results in decreased digestive fire.

The ayurvedic treatment of influenza works on pacifying the aggravated body energies, restoring healthy balance, strengthening digestion, eliminating excess mucus, and boosting immunity.

Ayurvedic procedures are very helpful in keeping up with the overall health. Procedures like Panchakarma are also helpful in boosting the natural healing capacity of the body. Using herbal oils, the impurities are naturally eliminated from the body. This is far the best approach which has a long-lasting impression on health.

At AyuKarma, we are committed to helping patients get better using our ancient ayurvedic methodologies.

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