Following the Trails and Finding Solutions For Influenza
Influenza affects many people by causing symptoms of painful muscles, chills, sore throats, fever, and chills. Additional issues of headache, coughing, and lethargy are also present during this illness. The progression of influenza can lead to pneumonia at is often fatal to younger individuals as well as the elderly. The flu can easily be confused with the common cold due to the similar symptoms of coughs, fever, and chills but it is a much harsher due to its viral composition.
The transmission of influenza is generally airborne as a result of coughing and sneezing of infected individuals. Also, direct contact with nasal mucous or other contaminated surface or areas are also ways of transmitting the virus.
During the regional influenza seasons, which result in 250,000 to 500,000 deaths per year, the spread of influenza is generally to pandemic proportions. The emergence of different strains was the cause for the three pandemics during the 20th century where millions of people were killed. Generally, these new strains are the result of an animal influenza strain transferring to humans.
At the end of the influenza season, a group of the strains actually migrate other regions. The common hypothesis regarding influenza is that the strain actually originates in China and Southeast Asia and makes it way to the United States or other parts of the world. During the sequencing of influenza genes, it was found that some of these compilations were able to relocate to more abiding environments.
This research is beneficial for vaccination development to better safeguard specific regions. South America, for example, gets most, if not all, of the influenza from North America. This means that instead of administering the same globally available vaccine, it would be better to construct a vaccine specific to the strain type in that area. The more thorough the investigation, the more information can be garnered as to where influenza is coming from.
Vaccinations generally include two influenza A virus types and a strain of influenza B virus. This trivalent influenza vaccine (TIV) is purified and inactivated causing very little disease transmission although people may exhibit flu-like symptoms up to week after the vaccination. However, a vaccine that is created for one year’s flu season may be ineffective the next year. The continual emergence of different strains makes new vaccination and regional flu research a necessary and exciting venture.
Since influenza is a virus, there are no cures after infection has taken place. The best course of action is to receive an annual flu shot during the flu season. The symptoms can be calmed by using over the counter medications to help your body recover and fight off the infection. Since your body must build a resistance to the virus, it is important to get the adequate amount of sleep.