The flu disease brought with it by autumn was almost never seen, thanks to the masks and distance used last year due to Covid-19. But experts predict an increase in flu this year. prof. Dr. Kurugöl said, “I expect an increase in flu cases as of November and December with the cooling of the weather.”
With the arrival of autumn, seasonal diseases and allergies began to peak. Last year, the flu was almost non-existent, thanks to intense Covid-19 measures. Experts predict an increase in flu cases this year. The start of vaccination against Covid-19 in our country this summer caused the mask and distance rules to disappear gradually. With the opening of schools, the transmission power of the flu increases.
“PEOPLE’S IMMUNITY DECREASED”
Saying that there will be a significant increase in flu cases this year compared to last year, Ege University Pediatric Infectious Diseases Department Head prof. Dr. Zafer Kurugol, “Since there were very few cases of flu in our country last year, people’s resistance to flu and their immunity levels decreased. Society has become more susceptible to the flu.”said.
Speaking to Milliyet, Prof. Dr. Kurugöl stated that this year the situation has completely changed compared to last year:
“In the past 1.5 years with Covid-19, there has been a significant decrease in respiratory tract infections transmitted by droplets due to restrictions, but the situation may now be reversed. Schools were closed for 1.5 years. There was no human contact. Due to the restrictions, there was a significant decrease in respiratory tract infections transmitted by droplets. Disease-causing viral infections in children were almost never seen. While normally a child has respiratory tract infections 8-10 times a year, they have almost never been sick, especially during the Covid-19 period when they were at home. But now the situation has completely changed. Children are in frequent contact with each other at school. Human mobility has increased tremendously. Life is almost completely back to normal. As a result, respiratory tract infections began to appear. Currently, there is an increase in the cases of Croup in children in Turkey. It is a virus called parainfluenza that causes croup. With the cooling of the weather in the coming months, I expect an increase in flu cases starting from November and December.”
FLU VACCINE RECOMMENDATION
The increase in contact in the community with vaccination seems to herald that there will be an increase in flu cases this year. Kurugolpointed out that a more severe picture may arise if Covid-19 and flu coexist, and stated:
“In order to prevent this negative situation, I especially recommend the flu vaccine this year. I especially recommend that people in the risk group, over the age of 65, and those with chronic diseases, should be vaccinated against influenza. Children in a group with a significant risk of flu with the opening of schools. I also recommend that children be vaccinated against the flu.”
Stating that in croup, children seem to suffocate and hoarseness is observed, Prof. Dr. Zafer Kurugöl noted that the disease is especially seen in children between the ages of 6 months and 3 years, causing coughing and breathing difficulties like barking at night. Saying that viral infections in children are seasonal, Kurugöl added:
“It’s just like fish. Just as it is the season for bonito and bluefish in fish, then when the weather gets colder and snowfall comes an influx of anchovy. The same is true for viruses. Rhinovirus and parainfluenza increase first. Then, as the weather gets colder, flu cases increase. In Turkey, the flu increases from November to December and some years cause an epidemic.