Receive Effective Flu Treatment to Reduce Symptoms and Prevent Serious Complications
The flu, also known as influenza, is a viral upper respiratory infection that is extremely contagious and can come on quickly. Although the symptoms of the flu and the common cold are similar, the treatment approach is very different. If influenza is left untreated, it can become life threatening. If you are experiencing a sore throat and fever, followed by a stuffy nose and muscle aches that have not improved after three days, it is recommended that you visit our urgent care center in Flushing, NY, immediately. Our facility is clean and comfortable, allowing you to receive the most effective flu treatment possible. In addition to the flu, we provide urgent care services for a number of other symptoms. With over 30 years of experience, our doctors are experts at providing immediate and comprehensive medical care.
Signs and Symptoms of the Flu
The flu is a viral infection that is transferred through tiny droplets in the air that escape when someone is talking or after someone sneezes. Droplets can be inhaled directly or transferred to your hands after touching anything the infected person has touched. If hands are not washed immediately before you touch your eyes, nose, or mouth, you have a greater chance of developing the flu. This is why washing your hands multiple times throughout the day with warm soap and water is important for your overall health.
Common flu symptoms include:
- Sore throat
- Nasal congestion
- Nasal drainage that changes from clear to yellow or dark green
- Headache or migraine
- Muscle aches in your back, arms, and legs
- Fever, followed by chills and sweats
- Persistent and painful cough
- Vomiting or diarrhea
While some of these symptoms could also indicate a common cold, you should visit our office as soon as possible if your symptoms have lasted more than three days.
When to See a Doctor
Healthy patients can generally treat flu symptoms at home with over-the-counter medications within the first few days. If, however, home treatment is ineffective and you have prolonged side effects that continue longer than three days, we recommend that you visit our urgent care facility as soon as possible.
You should call our office if you are experiencing advanced symptoms such as:
- Wheezing and difficulty breathing
- Difficulty staying awake
- Severe headache combined with a stiff neck
- Extremely high fever
- Fever over 100 degrees in children three months or younger
- Worsening symptoms
Treating the flu in high risk children and adults can help prevent other serious complications from developing, such as asthma flare-ups, ear infections, pneumonia, and bronchitis.
Factors that can increase your risk for developing the flu include:
- Age (children under the age of five and adults over the age of 65)
- Weakened immune system due to cancer treatments, HIV/AIDS, a cold, or use of corticosteroids
- Chronic illness, such as diabetes, asthma, and heart disease
- Severe obesity
- Pregnancy (especially women in their second or third trimester)
- Living conditions (nursing homes, college dorms, military barracks)
If home treatment is ineffective and you have prolonged side effects that continue longer than three days, we recommend that you visit our urgent care facility as soon as possible.
Treating and Preventing the Flu
During your consultation, one of our doctors will perform a thorough medical exam, carefully evaluating your past and current symptoms. If necessary, he or she may also take a throat swab to test for the virus. Once the diagnosis has been made, the doctor may recommend that you rest, drink plenty of fluids, and can prescribe a cough suppressant and antiviral medication. Because the flu is viral, antibiotics are typically ineffective, unless there is a bacterial infection present.
- Antiviral Medications: If taken within the first few days, antiviral medications can significantly reduce the duration of the flu and its symptoms. It can reduce the severity of symptoms as well as prevent the flu from developing in young or elderly patients who have been exposed to the flu.
- Antibody Vaccinations: This treatment is recommended as a preventative measure, especially for patients diagnosed as high risk. The flu has multiple strains and can change from year to year, which is why we recommend a vaccination each year before flu season (November to April) to help reduce your chances for developing it. Symptoms are typically less severe for patients who receive the vaccination but still contract the flu.
Schedule Your Consultation
If you are experiencing symptoms of the flu or you are concerned that you may have come in contact with someone with the flu, contact our office online. You can also call (718) 224-8855 to schedule your appointment with one of our doctors.