If you are taking care of someone at home who has novel H1N1 flu, you should protect yourself and other people in the household.
- Avoid being face-to-face with the sick person. When holding small children who are sick, place their chin on your shoulder so that they will not cough in your face.
- If close contact with a sick individual is unavoidable, consider wearing a facemask or respirator, if available and tolerable. For more information, see Facemasks and Respirators .
- Ask the person's health care provider about any special care that might be needed, especially if the person is pregnant or has a health condition such as diabetes, heart disease, asthma, or emphysema.
- Ask the patient's health care provider whether the patient or you, as the caregiver, should take antiviral medications.
- Keep the sick person away from other people as much as possible, especially others who are at high risk of complications from influenza.
- Make sure everyone in the household cleans their hands often, using soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub.
- Ask your healthcare provider if household contacts of the sick person-particularly those contacts who may have chronic health conditions-should take antiviral medications such as oseltamivir (Tamiflu®) or zanamivir (Relenza®) to prevent getting the flu.
- Get medical care right away if the patient
- Has difficult breathing or chest pain
- Has purple or blue discoloration of the lips
- Is vomiting and unable to keep liquids down
- Shows signs of dehydration, such as feeling dizzy when standing, being unable to urinate, or (in infants) crying without shedding tears
- Has seizures (for example, uncontrolled convulsions), or
- Is less responsive than normal or becomes confused.
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