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Children below 5 years are more susceptible to catching flu throughout the year, especially during seasonal changes like winter and monsoon. Swine Flu (H1N1) is one of the four flu strains that may be circulating in the environment.
Since the year 2009, Swine Flu (H1N1) continues to circulate as one of the seasonal Flu virus across the country. Recent reports suggest rise in cases of Swine Flu (H1N1) across India.
Flu is contagious and spreads from an infected person via coughing, sneezing, talking; or even spreads through touching contaminated objects or surfaces.
Following are some individuals who may be at a higher risk of developing serious complications due to flu: All children below 5 years of age may be at up to 7 times higher risk of hospitalization
Pregnant women may be at ~7 times higher risk of hospitalization & may have ~4 times higher risk of still births
The flu Symptoms usually observed are:
-Fever & chills
-Cough & sore throat
-Headache & body ache
-Diarrhea & fatigue
Complications include secondary bacterial infections, pneumonia, and bronchitis which may lead to hospitalization and sometimes death. Flu may be prevented by annual vaccination and maintaining a healthy lifestyle and having good hygiene practices.
Consultant Pediatrician, Dr. Upendra Kinjwadekar, President elect of Indian Academy of Pediatrics, says, “Despite the contagious nature and severity of the disease, 4in1 Flu vaccinations available in the market protect against 4 different Flu strains including Swine Flu (H1N1). Flu vaccination is well-tolerated and is especially recommended as an Annual Vaccination by Pediatricians for children 6 months onwards up to the age of 5 years.”
Consultant Gynecologist Dr. Sharda Jain, Secretary General of Delhi Gynecologist Forum says, “One of the effective ways to prevent Flu during pregnancy is to get 4in1 Flu vaccination between 32nd- 36th week. I strongly recommend Flu Vaccination because it not only benefits & protects the mother but also her new-born baby who is at high risk of contracting Flu till 6 months of age when they get eligible for their first Flu shot.”
A few other simple measures to Prevent Seasonal Flu include:
-Use masks in crowded places
-Avoid contact with an infected person
To know further visit MyVaccinationHub. Please consult your doctor for more information
Disclaimer: Issued in public interest by GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceuticals Limited. Dr. Annie Besant Road, Worli, Mumbai 400 030, India. Information appearing in this material is for general awareness only. Nothing contained in this material constitutes medical advice. Please consult your doctor for any medical queries, any question or concern you may have regarding your condition. The disease list indicated for vaccination is not complete, please consult your doctor for the complete vaccination schedule. Views/opinions expressed by the doctor are independent and not influenced in any way by any organization. NP-IN-ABX-OGM-220072, Nov 2022. This article has been produced on behalf of GSK by Times Internet’s Spotlight team.