Regional flu activity reported across Tennessee

Knoxville (WVLT) -- School leaders attribute some of the absenteeism in area schools to the flu.

Volunteer TV's medical reporter Jessa Goddard has a closer look at the number of flu cases in East Tennessee.

For the second week now, Tennessee is reporting "regional" flu activity.

But all of the states bordering Tennessee, besides Missouri, are already reporting "widespread" flu activity.

Health leaders say we did see a bit of a jump last week.

Just to give you an idea of what we're talking about, Knox County is reporting 244 new flu cases just last week.

Prior to that, there were only 115 cases total, reported since the flu season officially began on October first.

If your child already has the flu, there is little you can do besides try to relieve his or her aches and pains.

At home care should include:

Rest in bed.

Allow the child to drink lots of fluids, whatever your child wants.

Staying hydrated is the most important thing.

Treat fever with acetaminophen or ibuprofen, such as Children's Tylenol, Advil or Motrin.

And use a humidifier in your child's room to make dry air easier to breathe.

Keep children with the flu at home while the fever lasts.

Once the fever is gone, children may return to school and daycare.

Though, flu symptoms may last more than a week, it often takes a few weeks to return to normal activity after the flu.

Also, take note of how sick your child is now, and resolve to try to prevent the flu next year by getting him or her vaccinated with a flu shot or flumist next fall.

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