Even though the influenza is widely called as the flu, there are actually various sub-types of the virus and mutations that can occur all the time. The 3 major types of influenza include A, B and C. Both influenza A and B are capable of triggering outbreaks of seasonal flu but influenza C does not.
When it comes to influenza B, it is uncommon but still capable of triggering outbreaks of seasonal flu. Take note that 1-2 forms of influenza B are part of the seasonal flu vaccination yearly for protection from strains that are likely to cause illness during the upcoming flu season.
Indications of influenza B
The signs and symptoms of influenza B are the same as the symptoms of other types of flu. Many individuals can experience symptoms such as the following:
- Body aches
Once an individual acquires the flu, the symptoms can occur strong and abruptly, not on a gradual manner. They typically last between 3-7 days and the individual feels bad which makes it hard to do anything other than rest in bed.
How influenza B is diagnosed?
If the individual believes that he/she has the flu, it is best to consult a doctor during the initial 48 hours after the onset of the symptoms.
A flu test is performed and a diagnosis is made based on the test results, symptoms and the physical exam. In case the doctor diagnoses the individual with the flu, antiviral medications can be prescribed to shorten the duration of the illness as well as lessen the severity of the symptoms.
Some of the flu testing can determine whether it is influenza A or B, nonetheless several rapid tests that are executed in the clinic do not only tell whether or not the individual has flu. It is sad to note that even those tests are often inaccurate.
What happens if I have influenza B?
Always bear in mind that there is not much variance between influenza A and B when it comes to its effect on the body. It simply means that one is not more or less severe than the other.
The distinct difference is how they are categorized and their potential to trigger epidemics. When it comes to influenza B, it is capable of triggering outbreaks of seasonal flu but occur less frequently than the outbreaks of influenza A. In most cases, 2 strains of influenza A and one strain of influenza B are part of the seasonal flu vaccination.
Whether the individual acquires influenza B or A, it is vital to take proper care by getting enough rest, keeping the body properly hydrated and avoiding exposure to other individuals. If an individual is at risk for complications of flu or suspects that he/she developed a secondary infection, a doctor should be consulted as soon as possible.