Why Are Children at a Higher Risk for Flu?

Flu season is here, and that may mean sick days at home from school for your child or even a trip to the ER to manage flu complications , which are much more likely in children than adults. While most adults consider the flu a nuisance, it can be a serious health risk for kids, who are less able to fight off the virus. Children under the age of five are at the highest risk, and they often need medical care for the flu. In fact, about 20,000 children under five will be hospitalized each year because of flu complications. To help your child avoid complications of this nature and stay healthier this flu season, keep reading about how flu complications affect children.

High Exposure

In schools and daycare centers, it does not take much time for viruses like influenza to spread from child to child. While schools will encourage parents to keep sick children home from school, it can be very difficult to regulate the spread of the flu within the busy school environment. The best way to provide your child with protection in high exposure areas like the classroom is with an annual flu shot , which should be given to any child over six months in age.

Weaker Immune Health

Overall, children have weaker immune systems because their bodies are still growing and developing. Therefore, they may need plenty of extra rest, healthy foods, and fluids as they are fighting the flu to keep any serious complications at bay.

Poor Preventive Habits

Parents play an integral role in flu prevention, since they should lead by example with proper handwashing techniques, healthy eating, and the right methods for covering a cough or sneeze. Without these habits, children may be more likely to come down with the flu, putting them at a higher risk for hospitalization.

This flu season, you can count on MountainView Hospital to provide preventive healthcare tips and pediatric emergency care around the clock for your family. To connect with our Las Vegas emergency care services, call our Consult-A-Nurse healthcare referral line at (702) 233-5300.

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