Local Pediatricians See Increase in Flu Cases Among Children

5 years 1 month 4 weeks ago Wednesday, January 31 2018 Jan 31, 2018 January 31, 2018 10:59 PM January 31, 2018 in News

EDINBURG – This flu season is hitting children hard across the U.S. According to the Centers for Disease Control, a total of 37 influenza-associated pediatric deaths have been reported so far.

Parents here in the Rio Grande Valley say they are doing what they can to keep their kids safe.

"We try to stay home as much as possible," said Michelle Cook, a mother of two.

Cook said this year the flu is taking a toll on the other students in her kids’ classes.

"Oh yes, there been a lot of people out of school with the flu," said Cook.

Local pediatricians are also noticing a trend in kids with the flu in the Valley.

"We've seen a steady increase through the month of January," said Dr. Martin Garza, a pediatrician in Edinburg.

Dr. Garza says the number of kids with the flu in his office is similar to the flu pandemic in 2009.

One thing Dr. Garza is stressing this year is to get your child tested for the flu even if you feel they might have a common cold.

"Fever and cold symptoms generally mean flu or have a higher risk of flu," said Dr. Garza.

He says the best thing to do if your kid has the flu is, of course, go to the doctor.

"Generally patients will do fine as they go to their doctor they get their anti-flu medicine and they recover in a couple of days," said Dr. Garza.

There are ways to help protect your kid from the virus.

Dr. Garza says it's important to teach your kids how crucial it is to wash your hands especially when they are in school.

"It also helps if we are sick we do not go to school and spread the germs," said Dr. Garza.

Right now, Cook says she will keep educating her kids on the importance of staying clean especially when they go to school.

Dr. Garza says it's not too late to get your kids vaccinated. This year's flu season is expected to last for several more weeks.

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