Health Check: Widespread flu activity in Virginia

LYNCHBURG, Va. (WSET) - The Department of Health is reporting widespread flu activity in Virginia. That means flu has been detected in half the regions of the state.

The health department doesn't track individual cases -- rather cases of flu like illness.

We are in peak season for flu -- it lasts from December until March.

Haley Evans with the Lynchburg health department says you can protect your family by wiping down frequently touched places -- like door knobs.

Also be sure wash your hands a lot. It's not too late to get the vaccine and protect your family.

"So far this year the predominate strain circulating is an Influenza A strain,” Evans said. “Historically strains of influenza a have led to more hospitalizations and more deaths each year."

Unlike a cold, flu symptoms usually come on suddenly. Another key difference is a fever, which might not happen with a cold.

Other symptoms include:

  • Severe aches, weakness, extreme fatigue
  • Warm, flushed skin and painful red, watery eyes
  • A headache
  • A dry cough
  • A sore throat and runny nose

If you think you've had the flu, you start to get better and then symptoms come back worse -- like a really bad cough -- you need to seek medical attention right away.

Evans said you could have bacterial pneumonia, a complication of influenza.

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