As Influenza cases rise, doctors advise against self-medication

Doctors suggest that people should refrain from self-medication and seek timely medical help.
File photo
File photo

CHENNAI: As the cases of seasonal flu and Influenza increase, doctors say that negligence of safety measures is another cause of increased number of cases, especially among children. Doctors suggest that people should refrain from self-medication and seek timely medical help.

Experts emphasize on the use of masks and social distancing even for those suffering from flu as it can cut down the transmission. "It is important for the public to take extra precautions and ensure that masks are brought back into practice. Masks help in preventing the spread of flu or influenza. People have stopped the use of masks considering the low number of cases of Covid, but mask is effective in cutting down the transmission of flu from one person to another," said Dr Narendra Nath Jena, senior consultant and head of department of Emergency Medicine, Meenakshi Mission Hospital and Research Center.

Talking about dietary modifications, he said that the intake of fluids should be increased and an adequate amount of soups, juices, tender coconut water and other fruits rich in Vitamin C is important. "There can be prolonged symptoms of cold, cough and fever and immunity boosting food intake is important, " he said.

As the hospitals are seeing a surge in the number of admissions, the doctors say that many parents delay medical care and tend to self medicate with drugs sold through the pharmacies.

"The practice of self medication should be discouraged as the treatment for the flu cases is being done as per the protocol suggested by the Directorate of Public Health and Preventive Medicine. If the fever persists beyond 2-3 days, the doctors will undertake further investigations to determine the type of fever. The delay in the treatment can affect the overall health of an individual, thus, timely intervention is necessary, " said Dr N Kannan, group medical director at Dr Mehta's Hospital.

Doctors also say that the risk of dengue is likely in the coming days and people should practice several preventive measures to prevent a dengue outbreak.

"There are chances of dengue cases increasing in the next few months. We receive most of the cases from Madhavaram, Ponneri, Vyasarpadi, Thiruvottriyur and Thiruvallur district due to vicinity and also because of high population in these areas, with more issues of water contamination and breeding of mosquitoes. People should be cautious of preventing water contamination and clean all kinds of plastic containers, AC vents and refrigerators for any kind of water collection," said S Chandrashekhar, Professor of Medicine, Stanley Medical College and Hospital.

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