The colder fall and winter months tend to bring many illnesses with their annual arrival. Many viruses have similar symptoms, but it is important to understand the symptoms of RSV to know when to seek medical care. Read on to learn about RSV, its common symptoms, and how to avoid getting seriously sick from it.
Causes & Symptoms of RSV
RSV stands for Respiratory Syncytial Virus. It is a common viral infection that impacts the respiratory system. Anyone can contract RSV, although the most severe cases often occur in the elderly, young children, and those with underlying respiratory conditions such as asthma. Like all viruses, RSV is very contagious and is spread through inhaling airborne droplets released by sick individuals through talking, coughing, and sneezing. It can also spread through direct contact with someone who is sick.
Most of the time, RSV causes mild cold-like symptoms. However, in certain cases, it can cause life-threatening illness. The CDC concluded that almost all children will contract RSV by the age of two, so it is important to understand the common symptoms and know when to seek medical care.
Common RSV Symptoms:
- A productive cough
- Runny nose
- Loss of appetite
Although RSV usually resolves on its own within two weeks of symptoms appearing, if you have severe symptoms you should seek medical attention for proper diagnosis and treatment.
RSV Prevention Tips
Preventing the spread of RSV is the best way to ensure that it does not cause serious illness. However, because viruses are so contagious, it can be difficult to know how to keep yourself and your family protected. One important part of stopping the spread of viruses is self-isolating when you are sick so that you do not spread your illness to others.
The most common ways that viruses are able to infect someone are through airborne transmission and through direct contact. Because viruses are such minor infections, they usually go undiagnosed, meaning anyone can have a virus and not know it. This makes avoiding contracting a virus much more difficult because sick people are not self-isolating.
Tips for RSV Prevention:
- Proper hygiene such as handwashing
- Disinfecting surfaces often
- Covering your nose and mouth when you sneeze
- Stay home if you are sick
There is an RSV vaccine available for those who are at risk for severe illness or complications caused by RSV. Currently, healthcare professionals advise that the vaccine is suitable for the elderly and for pregnant mothers to help protect newborn infants against infection. You should speak to your healthcare provider if you have questions about your eligibility for the vaccine.
Get Same-Day Illness Treatment at AFC Urgent Care Lyndhurst
If you’re feeling under the weather, it is important to understand your symptoms and know when to seek medical attention. Early diagnosis is the best way to prevent serious illness and to know whether your illness is contagious. At AFC Urgent Care Lyndhurst, we offer same-day care without the need for an appointment. Simply walk-in.
Our facility is state-of-the-art, complete with an on-site lab to ensure rapid test results and customized treatment. We accept most medical insurance plans and offer low-cost care options. Simply walk into our clinic to get comprehensive care from our board-certified medical staff today. For more information about our clinic, please contact us directly.