Senior Flu, Cold & Virus Prevention

It seems like we can never get away from these common ailments.  When we contract the flu, a cold or virus it is not a pleasant experience.  The elderly run a greater risk of experiencing severe consequences and outcomes from contracting the Flu, a cold or a virus. Older adults are less likely to have the physical strength to fight off flu symptoms that a younger person may have.  It therefore is imperative that they get a Flu shot every year. If you are a caregiver or work with the elderly you should get a flu shot yearly.

Symptoms for Seniors

Flu, colds and virus symptoms can be similar.

  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Headache
  • Sore or scratchy throat
  • Stuffy nose
  • Fatigue and muscle soreness
  • Nausea is generally not a symptom of a cold

While colds generally last a few days to a week, the Flu can last for several days to a couple weeks.   Colds tend to come on gradually while the flu hits you quickly and forcefully.  Colds don’t generally produce a fever so if one develops it may be that you have an infection or the flu.

Flu Season

Flu season is winter to early spring.  It can however continue into March and April in some years.

What to do when your loved one contracts the Flu

If your loved one is at home, in an assisted living facility or nursing home use disinfectant wipes to wipe down doorknobs, TV remotes, light switches, bathroom fixtures and other surfaces that they may come in contact with.  Do this every couple of days.

Make sure they also:

  • Rest
  • Drink Fluids, ice chips, popsicles
  • See a doctor for anti-viral medication
  • Stay home and away for others
  • Wash hands often
  • Cover nose and mouth when sneezing