There has been some media coverage about the occurrence of influenza in Minnesota and we have had some cases among our students in the past weeks. Influenza is a contagious respiratory disease and not the “stomach flu”. It is caused by a virus that attacks the nose, throat and lungs.

Influenza symptoms come quickly and include fever, dry cough, sore throat, headache, extreme tiredness, nasal congestion, and body aches. A person can be infectious 1 day prior to the symptoms starting and up to 5 days after they occur. The flu is different from a cold as a child with the flu will often feel too sick to play.

If your child has a respiratory infection keep them home from school. They should not return until their fever has been gone for 24 hours and they feel well enough to participate in school. If your child has the flu they need rest and extra fluids and possibly medication such as Tylenol to reduce their fever. Please contact your physician if you have concerns about your child.

Illness Prevention
Please encourage your child to wash their hands often and well. It is recommended to wash hands with soap and water for 20 seconds to get rid of germs!!! Encourage your child to wash hands prior to eating or putting anything in their mouth.

Teach your child to cough or sneeze into their sleeve. Coughing into a tissue is good but they are not always available when we need them. Tissues need to be disposed of after every use.

Encourage your child not to share anything that goes into their mouth such as food, straws, cups, pencils, etc.

Encourage your child to eat nutritious foods and get plenty of sleep.

It is not too late to have your child vaccinated against the flu. Check with your physician about the possibility of having your children vaccinated.

We hope these tips will keep you and your family healthy. Please refer to the Minnesota Department of Health Influenza information sheet for more information.
Minnesota Department of Health Influenza Information