How do you protect your family from the flu?
CINCINNATI (WKRC) - Early in January, Sara Rufs 11-month-old son Lincoln wasn't feeling well. "He started running a little bit of a fever."
Instead of waiting it out, they took him to he doctor. That's exactly what Terry Foster says she should do, given the flu season this year. "The mother is the expert on the child's health, at all times. They may not have medical background, but they are the expert on how that child is. We're always concerned about a really sick child, especially a child with a high temperature, lethargic, really sleepy."
Doctors say the majority of cases right now are in the 21-to-30 age group, and then the overall majority would be under thirty. They are also seeing a peak in younger children one to five.
The Centers for Disease Control is concerned about how quickly it is spreading and that the flu has led to the deaths of at least 20 children nationwide.
How does that happen? "They crash really quick and sometimes a child with a high fever-- serious congestion things like that-- can just lack the compensatory mechanisms to fight an infection or deal with shock that an adult would."
Seek medical attention if you or your child experiences, "fever, congestion, cough, terrible fatigue, loss of appetite. You probably have the flu if you have those symptoms."
If you want to prevent the flu get a flu vaccination. "Even if you end up having the virus, it will help make the symptoms less severe. And the overall duration of the disease will be less, so you will be sick for fewer days."
It's also important to remember, "you can't wash your hands too many times."
Handwashing should take place for at least 20 seconds to remove the germs. That's enough to sing happy birthday twice.
Zach Raney with the Northern Kentucky Health Department says it's important to note that so far in just a few counties this year, "we have one thousand three hundred and one cases of the flu at this point we had maybe eighty cases last year."