For a young and healthy person, symptoms of the flu might mean no more than calling out sick from work and spending a few days in bed. For seniors though, the flu is serious business. It may lead to dangerous complications, and possibly even death. So when symptoms appear, it’s a good idea to take them seriously and seek medical attention.
What Are the Symptoms?
It’s easy to mistake the flu for other seasonal illnesses, but there are specific symptoms to look out for. Here are a few of the most common ones for seniors:
- Abrupt symptom onset
- Chest congestion and cough
- Aches, often severe
- Fatigue or weakness
- More common in children, but sometimes seniors may experience digestive upset
There are also some more severe symptoms that may pop up if the flu is worsening or developing severe complications. If you notice any of these symptoms, seek medical attention immediately to avoid the illness progressing. These may include:
- Shortness of breath or rapid breathing
- Chest pain
- Coughing up blood
- Confusion or disorientation
- Change in skin color, particularly in the lips or nails
Get a House Call for the Flu
If you’ve been feeling poorly, or are noticing any of the flu symptoms listed above, the best course of action is to seek medical attention immediately. Delays in diagnosis and treatment may result in prolonging the symptoms and complications of the flu, and a doctor can examine you for early signs of potentially life-threatening complications.
But don’t head out the door just yet. Going to your local ER can expose you to further contagions, and can also expose others to your flu germs. Plus, for many seniors transportation can be difficult. You could call an ambulance, sure, but then you’ve got a huge bill to deal with – a hardship for those on a fixed income.
Instead, request a house call. DispatchHealth travels so the flu doesn’t. With a simple phone call to 1-866-FLU-CREW, a team of medical professionals from DispatchHealth, also known as the season’s “Traveling Flu Crew”, will be sent to your home to diagnose, treat, and help you manage your flu symptoms. They can perform rapid infectious disease tests, administer antiviral medications, assess your condition if you suspect complications, and answer any questions you may have.
DispatchHealth’s clinical teams are able to spend about 45 minutes with each patient, compared to the average 15 minutes spent with physicians in other settings. So they can give the kind of care and attention that’s needed for complex cases. And since they accept most insurance plans, including Medicare, there won’t be a huge bill to deal with afterward. In fact, they’re an exceptionally affordable alternative to an emergency room visit.
So the next time you’re concerned about flu symptoms, or have another urgent medical need, sit back, relax and call in a team from DispatchHealth.