This was the #1 question with which I went in to attend the #MomVsFlu awareness session conduced recently in Mumbai. I mean, I feel I am the favorite of flu virus. Ever since I was a little girl, I remember being under the bout of cold and flu, at least once a month. Running nose, leg cramps, headache, lethargy brought my entire system to a standstill during those 5 sick days. The saga continued through my growing up years and worsened during pregnancy.
Most or almost all the time, I thought I had common cold, so I relied on the regular salt-water gargle, steam and vaporubs to treat the symptoms. Little did I know that this works only for common-cold, a flu virus (usually called viral or viral flu or flu or influenza)requires a different line of treatment. And while little can be done to avoid the bouts of common cold, the instances of flu can definitely be curtailed by an annual preventive vaccination.
Speaking as a #MomVsFlu panelist, renowned Obstetrician, Dr. Mukesh Gupta who has been awarded the ‘Emerging Star of Medicine’ by Indian Medical Association MWSB said “The flu virus affects the lungs and can turn fatal. Every year, in the month of January, the WHO decides the stain of virus that will affect majority of the world population and gives a directive to the pharmaceutical companies to develop the vaccine. This vaccine is manufactured and made available for mass market by March-April. The flu vaccine, hence needs be taken every year and April-May is the best time to take the shot, just before the school starts, as you will be protected from the latest flu virus for the whole of the year.”
Adding to this Dr. Uday Pai, renowned Pediatrician with 29 years of experience in consulting, research and analytics, said “Once the flu virus has attacked the child and the child is suffering from uncontrolled fever, having difficulty in breathing etc, you cannot give the flu vaccine at that stage. Vaccines are preventive medicines and take 4-6 weeks to show effect. Hence it cannot be effective if it’s given as a post-facto.”
Celebrity mom,Genelia Deshmukh who is supporting the Mothers against Influenza (MAI) campaign shared that another mother from her sons class tells her “My child did not get flu, I don’t need the vaccine”. She brings out a very valid point here that “That child has probably been lucky to not get infected by the flu virus because the 10 other children in that class have taken the flu vaccination. That child may NOT be this lucky when out playing in the park or at the mall or at the swimming class etc.” She urges every mother to start a dialogue with her doctor towards protecting her family from Influenza.
So yes, it is very much possible to protect ourselves from the Flu. And Cocoon vaccination is most important where every member of the family, including the parents, are vaccinated.
If you want to know more please click on the MAI website which provides a credible source of information on Influenza
Find/Consult a Doctor– Vaccinating Doctors can be found in every locality with a simple search by a pincode. In case, one is looking for a doctor who can vaccinate, click here.
#WorriersToWarriors– Fight all worries related to your family members suffering from Flu by becoming more Flu and vaccination aware
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‘Disclaimer: I attended a discussion on influenza awareness facilitated by Abbott IndiaLimited. Any opinion expressed in this blog is my personal opinion and not the opinion ofAbbott India Limited. Abbott India Limited does not assume any liability for the content of theblog. The blog post is not meant to be a replacement for a doctor consultation, nor is it a medical recommendation or prescription of treatment for babies having Influenza. Any reader of this blog or their family members suffering from Influenza should specifically consult his/her doctorfor the same and follow the suggested course of treatment’