Jan 26th, 2014
Precautions to Help Seniors Avoid the Flu this Season
Elderly flu can be fatal if not diagnosed and treated on time especially if the senior has had chest complications in the past.
Their immune systems are compromised and they cannot fight diseases as well as they could before. Although it can be difficult to control the spread of the flu, there are definitely things that you can do to reduce the risk of them catching it.
1. Get them their flu shots on time
The most important thing you can do to help your beloved senior is to make sure that they get their annual shot. In some people, it helps to prevent the flu entirely. In others, it doesn’t do this but it reduces the severity of the symptoms a great deal. If your senior doesn’t live with you, follow up with your caregiver to ensure that they receive their shots on time.
2. Watch your hygiene
Flu is spread through the air so the better your hygiene the higher chance that you will keep it at bay altogether. First, seniors with the flu shouldn’t stay with healthy ones. The CDC recommends that anyone who has the flu should stay indoors for at least 24 hours after the fever is gone. Make sure that your senior is washing their hands regularly.
3. Make sure they take their medications
Sometimes they will get the flu and the doctor will prescribe medication; make sure that they are taking as prescribed. Do not be tempted to skip the doctor’s visit and give them over the counter drugs. The only drugs that can help are antivirals and not antibiotics and you can only get antivirals through the doctor.
How do I know that my senior has contracted the flu?
When caring for an ageing parent, it is very important that you know flu symptoms so that you can identify them as soon as they appear.
Seniors with the flu will have chills, body aches, fatigue, coughing and sore throat.
In more severe cases, you may notice that the senior has blue or purple lips, they are having difficulty breathing and they are having chest pains. They may also feel dizzy, they may be confused and non-responsive, they may have difficulty standing up, they may vomit a lot and they may also have seizures. If this happens, call an ambulance right away and begin CPR.