Health officials warning against what some are calling a tri-demic. Experts say rsv, covid and the flu are all cause for concern, especially as we approach the winter months.
Experts say these viruses are all transmitted through air droplets and they're all contagious. Dr. Nazlie Latefi says one thing we can do to prevent these diseases, is building up what's called our "barrier immunity."
Latefi: So that's the lining in our nose and throat cause as I said, that's usually the first area that respiratory viruses land on and we do have very strong defenses if we keep them in good shape. This includes being properly hydrated, getting fresh air, taking a probiotic and maintaining a healthy diet. Latefi says you can also boost your immune system by taking vitamin c and zinc. Another major way to prevent these viruses is by managing stress.
Latefi: Stress compromises our immune system and also joy - which we should all have during the holidays - is very good for us and would actually also boost our immune system. And when it comes to rsv, hospitals are experiencing and increase rsv positive patients. The virus can feel like the common cold, but can also have serious side effects especially for infants, prematures babies and people with weakened immune systems Dr. Sallie Permar, a pediatric infectious disease specialist says if your child does have rsv, there's lots parents can do to prevent the virus from worsening like controlling their fever and treating underlying asthma.
Permar: Many of these things can be done at home when the disease is mild or in consultation with a pediatrician like using over-the-counter fever medication like tylenol and ibuprofen at the correct doses, working on your asthma controller medications if prescribed.
But when should you seek medical attention?
Permar: Is when you see your child having difficulty breathing, and rapid breathing and breathing that makes it hard for the child to drink and remain hydrated are good times to think about looking for medical care. You can find out more details about these viruses by visiting health.ny.gov.