Sick with the Flu? Here is When to See a Doctor

Sick with the Flu? Here is When to See a Doctor

If you or a family member gets hit with the flu, you may be wondering when is a good time to see a doctor. In general, most people who get the flu can weather it at home very safely and it will pass in about a week or so. However, complications from the flu can lead to pneumonia or severe bronchitis and in some cases, death. So when do you just tough it out, and when do you see a doctor?

If you are in one of the high-risk groups, and are experiencing flu symptoms, you should talk to a doctor right away. These groups include young children, adults 65+, pregnant women, and those diagnosed with diabetes, heart disease, HIV, asthma, and other chronic conditions.

If you are not in one of those categories, the important thing you can do when infected with the flu is to rest and drink lots and lots of water. To alleviate the fever and body aches associated with the flu you take over the counter medicine like Tylenol, Advil and Motrin. Here is our PSA when it comes to taking OTC medicine: follow the directions on the box so that you know you are use the right dose and giving it at the right amount of time and do not mix medication together, as there is no added benefit.

Play it safe and see a doctor if one of these 10 signs or symptoms of flu develop:

  • Persistent fever that lasts more than 2 days
  • A wheezing cough that lasts more than 3 weeks; coughing with any difficulty breathing or with chest pain
  • Breathing distress
  • A sore throat so severe that it's hard to swallow
  • Yellow, green, rust-colored, or bloody mucus from the lungs
  • Facial pain that lasts more than 3 days
  • A stuffy nose that isn't improving by 10 days or gone by 3 weeks
  • Bluish color in the lips or fingernails
  • Infant or toddler who tugs at his or her ears or cries whenever lying down
  • Coughing in a baby that makes it difficult to eat or sleep, especially if the baby is younger than 6 months

Don’t forget doctors on Amwell are available 24/7 to answer any questions you may have about the flu, symptoms and remedies.

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