Luckily, many of the traditional treatments may still be applicable to the more dangerous strains of bird flu, which is a cause for worldwide concern.
If you believe you have been exposed to the flu, you should pay close attention to the onset of symptoms.
It is always possible that, even though you have come in contact with an infected person or animal, you will not become infected.
The virus travels by saliva and mucus particles and, therefore, may not be transmitted in every case of contact.
Proper hygiene and avoidance of the ill may prevent infection.
However, if symptoms arise you should immediately go to the doctor.
Specifically, if you are experiencing body aches in addition to cold symptoms, you are likely suffering from an influenza strain.
The reason immediate treatment is needed is to have the option to utilize antiviral medications.
These drugs, such as Tamiflu and Relenza, lessen the severity of the symptoms of influenza by controlling the virus.
Basically, they are the viral version of antibiotics, but instead of killing the virus, they suppress it.
However, these medications must be administered quickly, within two days of the onset of symptoms, to be effective.
Therefore, immediate medical care is necessary.
In addition to antiviral medications, there are other traditional treatments you may utilize to nurse your flu symptoms.
Adequate fluid intake is one of the most important aspects of fighting influenza.
Dehydration is a sign the illness is becoming very severe; therefore, every measure should be taken to assure that does not happen.
There are also over-the-counter medications that may be taken to lessen the severity of the symptoms of the flu.
Taking acetaminophen and/or ibuprofen to control fever, cold medications, and lozenges will make the illness more bearable as your body fights the virus.
It is important to get plenty of rest during this time, as your body must replenish.
After a few days, if the symptoms do not improve or if they become severe, you should return to the doctor.
While there is not a miracle drug to treat the flu, you should be monitored by a doctor to ensure worse conditions do not transpire as a result of the viral infection, such as pneumonia.