Flu Season

Flu Season

Flu Season services offered in The Loop, Chicago, IL

Millions of Americans catch the influenza virus during flu season each year. Thankfully, the flu vaccine and other preventive measures can protect you and your loved one’s health. At Michigan Avenue Primary Care in The Loop of downtown Chicago, Illinois, the team specializes in diagnosing and treating the flu during flu season and throughout the year. Call Michigan Avenue Primary Care to schedule flu treatment, or request your appointment online today. 

Flu Season Q & A

When is flu season?

Flu season runs annually from October to May. Although it’s possible to get sick with the flu at any time, infections are particularly common during the late fall, winter, and spring. During this period, temperatures tend to drop, and people spend more time inside, increasing their risk of exposure. 

Should I see a doctor if I experience flu symptoms outside of flu season?

The influenza virus remains active throughout the year. Make an appointment at Michigan Avenue Primary Care if you or your child develop symptoms like:

  • Headache
  • Dry, persistent cough
  • Shortness of breath
  • Tiredness and weakness
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Sore throat
  • Eye pain

Sometimes, the flu causes gastrointestinal symptoms, including diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting. 

How is the flu virus diagnosed?

Your Michigan Avenue Primary Care provider reviews your medical records and discusses your symptoms, including when they started, what they feel like, and if they respond to over-the-counter pain medications or decongestants. 

Next, your provider conducts a physical exam. They check your eyes, ears, nose, and throat and listen to your heart and respiratory rate.

Your provider also completes a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test. They collect a nose or throat swab and send it to a lab for analysis. If your test is positive, you have the flu and are contagious.

How is the flu virus treated?

The Michigan Avenue Primary Care team treats the flu virus using a conservative and integrative approach. They could suggest:

  • Rest
  • Drinking plenty of fluids
  • Over-the-counter pain medication
  • Over-the-counter decongestants
  • Over-the-counter cold and flu medications

If your symptoms are severe, your provider might prescribe oseltamivir, an antiviral medication that eases uncomfortable symptoms and reduces the risk of complications.

Is there any way to prevent the flu during flu season?

There’s no way to prevent the flu entirely, but you can take steps to reduce your risk.

The Michigan Avenue Primary Care team recommends getting an annual flu shot, avoiding crowded areas during flu season, and covering your mouth whenever you cough or sneeze. Likewise, they encourage you to wash your hands several times daily and wear an N95 mask if you feel sick and need to go out in public.

Call Michigan Avenue Primary Care to schedule flu treatment, whether it’s flu season or not, or book your appointment online today.