Flu vs. H1N1

Difference Between Flu and H1N1

 

As we strive for survival, it is inevitable, especially for people trying to feel the sense of urbanization to acquire diseases, which at first glance seem to be results of daily physical exhaustion thus sometimes regarded less and taken to the least consideration. It is important for us to be of knowledge about these diseases for we do not know what or when these physical imbalances would strike our normal circulation. Have you ever had flu? Better know more now than be sorry without you noticing it.

Flu, otherwise referred to as influenza is a viral infection caused by RNA viruses (viruses having ribonucleic acid (RNA) in there genetic make up) from the family Orthomyxoviridae (Influenza viruses). The disease mainly affects the respiratory system and is characterized by the sudden onset of fever, body malaise, muscle pains, non-productive cough, soar throat, and rhinitis.

It is sometimes misperceived as the common colds but differs in severity and onset. Usually a person infected with the disease recovers after a week or two but for those who are classified to be of the elderly group, the disease may lead to more severe complications and death.

There are 3 major genera of virus causing the disease: the Influenza A virus, infecting variety of bird species and humans; Influenza B virus, known to have infected seals but are exclusively affecting humans; and Influenza C virus, known to be infecting dogs, pigs, and humans however this genus is less common than the other strains.

Among these strains, only the Influenza A virus has been widely known as it is considered the most virulent human pathogen causing the disease. This genus was also believed to be the causative agent of the famous A H1N1, a kind of flu which was pandemic on 2009 and feared for its high mortality rates causing 17,000 deaths by the start of 2010.

Swine Flu, a term used to describe A H1N1, is almost similar to a seasonal flu, however once this would not be properly treated it may lead to a more severe illness manifesting symptoms that could lead to death. You cannot really distinguish their differences; you can only tell that you are manifesting the disease’s symptoms once the causative agent has been identified.

Flu could be treated only by resting because this is not really a severe medical condition; it is just a self limiting disease, meaning the symptoms may subside after a number of days. The disease could only be considered fatal once you develop any of the following emergency signs; for children: fast breathing or trouble breathing, bluish skin color, not drinking enough fluids, not waking up or not interacting, Being so irritable that the child does not want to be held, flu-like symptoms improve but then return with fever and worse cough, and fever with a rash; for adults: difficulty breathing or shortness of breath, pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen, sudden dizziness, confusion, and severe or persistent vomiting.

Prevention is still better than cure, should it just be a simple seasonal flu or even a fearsome A H1N1. We can prevent these diseases from causing harm to our body by practicing some simple measures like regular hand washing, avoiding crowded places, eating healthy foods especially those rich in vitamin c, in some instance if the disease becomes pandemic, we can use face mask to increase our line of defenses. Though flu is just a self limiting disease, we shouldn’t take it for granted for it may become a serious illness once it is not treated properly.

Differences between flu & h1N1 In brief:

  • Flu, caused by RNA viruses from the Family Orthomyxoviridae, is a viral infection of the respiratory system which could last for about 1 -2 weeks but could be fatal for elderly people.
  • There are 3 genera that cause the disease, among which is Influenza A virus which is the most virulent and known to be the causative agent of A H1N1.
  • A H1N1, though shares the same symptoms that of a seasonal flu, could lead to a more severe medical condition and may cause death.
  • The best way to treat flu is rest, unless you manifest any of the danger signs.
  • Prevent flu through simple measures like hand washing, eating healthy foods, and etc.