Flu - 2018 Checklist.pdf
The CDC has confirmed cases in all counties. The flu virus has hit Maine with vigor and predictions are that it may get worse.
This letter comes as a reminder of some of the tips we can all use to help us stay healthy. Some tips for flu management and treatment are included below. The CDC Flu Symptom Checklist for Families is on the reverse side of this letter.
The importance of hand washing cannot be underestimated. Hands need to be washed frequently and washed well. This means washing with soap and washing for 15-20 seconds (about as long as it takes to sing the ABC's song or Yankee Doodle Dandy). Use a hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available.
We have all been taught to cover our mouth and nose when we cough or sneeze. Traditionally we have been instructed to do this using our hands. Today we are teaching everybody to use his or her shoulder, upper arm, or even the inside of his or her shirt. This way the germs are captured in the material of the clothing in a location other people are not likely to touch. When we cough or sneeze into our hands, we frequently do not get to wash our hands immediately. We then transfer those germs that are on our hands to whatever we touch next. Someone else comes along, touches that object and now the germs are on their hands. This cycle continues, the virus spreads, and it is the most common way flu germs spread from one person to the next.
Rest. Get lots of it. When we are tired, our resistance to illness drops. This is not a time when we can afford to have this happen. Students have busy academic, athletic, and social schedules. They can easily get quite 'run down'. Make sure children are getting adequate (even extra) rest. This will help keep up their immune system.
Lastly, please keep sick children at home. Children should be free of fever, vomiting and/or diarrhea for 24 hours before returning to school. This gives them adequate time to recuperate and not spread the virus to others. Please refer to the RSU 83 / MSAD 13 Health Protocol in the Nurse section of the district web site for guidelines on when students should not be in school.
Management and Treatment
Light activity until symptoms and fever disappear.
Rest as much as possible.
Drink at least two quarts of fluid per day -- water, juice, etc.
Eat a regular diet as tolerated.
Take acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil) as directed for body aches and or fever. Take cough medicine as indicated for cough.
Gargle with warm salt water as needed for sore throat.
Wash your hands often, use tissues when coughing or sneezing and properly dispose of it.
Call your health care provider if:
you have a fever that persists for more than 2 to 3 days,
you have any recurrences of symptoms, or
you have any questions or concerns about your illness.
Please feel free to call me if you have any questions. Let's all work together to stay healthy.
Mary Ellen W. Chadbourne, R.N., B.S.N.
District School Nurse