We are entering into a time of year that has many positive aspects, from the time we get to spend with family to the colder weather that many of us love. Unfortunately, it is also a time of year that many people refer to as the ‘cold and flu season’. Of course, you can get sick any day of the year but when the weather is colder and many of us are confined in smaller spaces with many people, it is more likely to spread. We want to avoid it, but sometimes it is inevitable that we catch it.
Parents are constantly on the watch for any symptoms that show their children may be catching a cold or the flu. A runny nose, fever, chills or even a slight change in the personality can signal the fact that an illness is on the horizon. One nurse and mother from Nebraska, however, recognized something in her son and it is a symptom that most people would never associate with the flu. As a parent, it is something that is vital for you to know.
When Brodi Willard’s son developed hives, she took him to see the doctor. She was shocked at what the diagnosis was so she went on to Facebook and shared her story.
“Please read and share,” Brodi wrote on Facebook. “My son came home from school with hives. Every time he would scratch, more would appear. We tried changing his clothes and giving him a bath, but nothing helped. I called his pediatrician. They said they had two kids come into the office that day with the same symptoms and tested POSITIVE FOR INFLUENZA.”
Her son was diagnosed with influenza B and she was shocked at what she heard when she visited the doctor.
“He has had NO symptoms,” she wrote in her post. “No fever, no cough, and no runny nose. He only has hives. Please keep watch on your children so if they develop hives, please call your pediatrician. I have never heard of this symptom but it is obviously something to be on the lookout for.”
After the post was put online it went viral and over 260,000 people shared it.
What a person has hives, it is triggered by the immune system because it is fighting something. In the case of the flu, the body is fighting a viral infection and the hives will likely only last for a few days.
The reason why it is so important to understand this symptom is that it can help children to get tested sooner. Influenza A and influenza B are different but they are similar to each other. Influenza A causes most flu deaths but the influenza B virus is also dangerous, even though it doesn’t mutate quickly.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advises that a flu shot should be given by the end of October. Everyone over the age of six months old is recommended to get it, even women who are pregnant.
You can learn more about how the flu spreads in this video: