Feeling Sick At Work? UR.Life OHC Can Help With Viral Fever And Influenza

Body pain, chills, fever and cold, these are the symptoms of the seasonal flu. Find out how occupational health centres can help to treat viral fever and flu.

By URLife Team
04 Apr 2023

Dr. Sreekanth Jaganmani is amongst the most experienced senior consultant internal medicine specialists at Apollo Hospitals, Jubilee Hills, Hyderabad. He is also a visiting professor at Macquarie University Sydney, Australia. Besides, Dr Sreekanth Jaganmani has served as the principal investigator for numerous clinical drug trials. One such programme was for Pfizer's, a leading global medical drug manufacturer, 'Azith SR' trial. Now approved by the FDA, this drug has become a ground-breaking treatment method for bacterial infections. His 25 years of expertise covers a range of lifestyle diseases like hypertension, diabetes, asthma, etc.


With the significant rise in the cases of viral fever and influenza A subtype H3N2 in the country, respiratory infections are raising concerns again.

A 2023 study published in the journal StatPearl states that viral flu or influenza is a transmissible infection that affects the upper and lower respiratory tract. Influenza is a wide spectrum of viruses that causes viral infection. A few of these viruses can affect humans, and different species like birds (bird flu) or animals (swine flu).


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How is the flu virus transmitted?

Influenza viruses can be transmitted by getting in contact with things that have been contaminated with the virus. These viruses infect others through respiratory droplets from the mouth and the nose of a flu-infected person during coughing, talking, and sneezing. Illness from these viruses can be symptomatic or asymptomatic, which means that they may go unnoticed for a long time. In other words, their transmission rate is high, and symptoms may take 5-7 days to show up. After sickness, most patients take a few days to recover fully, though complications like pneumonia can occur in certain high-risk groups.


Related story: Cold, Flu, or Allergy? managing Allergies At Work


Who is at high risk?

After Covid-19, almost everyone is at risk of developing flu during monsoon and winter seasons. However, the ones who are at the highest risk are a significant portion of adults above the age of 50, pregnant women and children. This is also a point to be noted that different seasons impact certain age groups differently. Besides, the flu’s severity also alters in non-flu seasons like summer or spring, where we get unexpected rain showers.

  • Young children under the age of 5, especially those younger than 2 are at higher risk of developing serious flu-related complications.
  • Adults older than age 65
  • Pregnant women or those planning to conceive during flu season
  • People with weakened immune systems
  • Those with chronic illnesses, such as asthma, COPD, heart disease, kidney disease, liver disease, and diabetes
  • People with a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or higher


Related story: Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): Causes, Symptoms, And Management



The flu is caused by an influenza virus which mostly affects your nose, throat, and lungs. Avian influenza, or bird flu, is an infectious disease of birds caused by various influenza A viruses, including A(H5N1), A(H5N8), and H7N9 viruses. These viruses are concerning, as they keep changing their structure and ability of transmission which can cause a severe pandemic.

  • People contract the flu virus when they breathe in microscopic airborne droplets from the coughs or sneezes of someone with the virus.
  • If you touch something that has been soiled with the virus, and then touch your mouth, nose, or eyes.
  • People often confuse colds and flu. They are different, but you might have some of the same symptoms, but not necessarily the influenza virus. To confirm, you can approach the medical examiner to get tested.
  • In monsoon and winter, people can catch a cold several times a year. Whereas, the frequency of people normally contracting the flu is rare.


Related story: How Much Do You Know About Your Lung Health?



Symptoms of influenza appear within 2 to 3 days. You can start to feel sick about 1 to 7 days after you come in contact with the virus. For instance, students and co-workers often get sick within 2 or 3 weeks of the flu's arrival in their respective premises as they are often surrounded by many people.


Other common symptoms include:

  • Body aches
  • Fever between 102°F (39°C) and 106°F (41°C).
  • Chills
  • Dizziness
  • Flushed face
  • Headache
  • Lack of energy
  • Nausea and vomiting

The fever, aches, and pains begin to go away on days 2 through 4. But new symptoms may occur, including:

  • Dry cough
  • Increased symptoms that affect breathing
  • Runny nose (clear and watery)
  • Sneezing
  • Sore throat

Usually, flu symptoms go away in 4 to 7 days. The cough and fatigue may linger for weeks, and for that, one has to take sufficient rest. Sometimes, the fever comes back and can make certain chronic conditions worse, like asthma, COPD, or breathing problems.


Related Story: 7 Ways You Can Avoid Getting A Cold



Most people do not need to see a healthcare provider when they have flu symptoms. This is because most people are not at risk for a severe case of the flu. If you are infected with the influenza virus, you must see a healthcare professional immediately. The medical examiner team can make a diagnosis after hearing about your symptoms.

They will administer a swab test by taking the mucous from the nose or throat to detect the presence of influenza or Covid-19 virus. Most of the time, test results are delivered quickly and it helps you to get the best treatment.


Related story: Doctor’s Rx For Treating Viral Fever Symptoms



Speak to your doctor about the right treatment for you. Taking antiviral medication such as oseltamivir (Tamiflu), zanamivir (Relenza), peramivir (Rapivab), or baloxavir (Xofluza) may shorten the duration of your illness and help control more-serious problems. Oseltamivir is a medicine taken by mouth. Zanamivir can be inhaled through an inhaler.

  • Acetaminophen (Tylenol) and ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) help suppress fever.
  • Avoid taking aspirin tablets.
  • Cough drops or throat sprays will ease a sore throat.
  • Avoid smoking or drinking alcohol.

However, ingesting medicine for the flu can lead to side-effects for those dealing with other health ailments.

  • Lung disease (including asthma)
  • Heart conditions (except high blood pressure)
  • Kidney, liver, nerve, and muscle conditions
  • Blood disorders (including sickle cell disease)
  • Diabetes
  • A weakened immune system due to diseases (such as AIDS), radiation therapy, or certain medicines, including chemotherapy and corticosteroids
  • Other long-term medical problems

These medicines work better if you start taking them within 2 days of your first symptoms. Children at risk for a severe case of the flu may also need these medicines.It is advisable to talk to your doctor and get a prescription before taking any antiviral medicines.


Related story: Dengue Fever: All You Need To Know


Home remedies to cure flu

If you do come down with the flu, these measures may help ease your symptoms:

  • Drink plenty of liquids: Drink water and increase the intake of juices to prevent dehydration.
  • Rest: Get more sleep to help your immune system fight infection. You may need to change your activity level, depending on your symptoms.
  • Take painkillers: Use acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB), to combat the achiness associated with influenza only after consulting your doctor.


Related story: Fighting The Stomach Flu: Symptoms, Treatment And Prevention


Adult Immunisation Program

Vaccination is one of the most important and effective strategies to defend ourselves from potential viral infections that could turn fatal. If you can tackle a few viral diseases like pneumonia, hepatitis or common flu in adults, the intensity of the non-communicable diseases can be reduced. This is a way to bridge the gap or reduce the impact on non-communicable diseases.

People with diabetes, respiratory conditions, cardiac issues, hypertension, cancers, including the paediatric population as these are at high risk of contracting viral influenza flu quickly. Influenza virus has a tendency to mutate as it keeps changing its structure, and with each phase the virus becomes infectious and deadly which can become difficult to deal with. As new strains emerge, various companies and research centres have come forward to create new vaccines based on the stereotypes of the virus which is circulating. The flu shot must be taken by all vulnerable groups as it reduces the intensity and severity of the disease.


Need all your wellness solutions in one place? A whole new world awaits just a click away.


Health should be a priority always, and at UR.Life, we help you make it one. Our Corporate Wellness programme is designed to support and lift employees so they can be healthy and their most productive self in the world. Our holistic wellness approach caters to all aspects of your well-being. We ensure that you are able to bring your whole self to work.

With our Occupational Health Centers and Health Risk Assessment, you can find out which diagnostic tests will be best for your individual needs and get started right away. Our medical professionals ensure that routine health check-ups will never be an issue. Advanced laboratory technologies and certified methods ensure that you are always able to put your health first.

Click here to learn more about the UR.Life Corporate Wellness programme and unlock better health.











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