Viruses spreading across Texoma

Viruses spreading across Texoma

WICHITA FALLS, TX (KAUZ) - With the temperatures dropping, the amount of people getting sick is rising.
Newschannel 6 found out what viruses are spreading through Wichita Falls and what's making people feel so lousy during what's supposed to be the most wonderful time of the year.
Waiting rooms have seen an increase in patients because of these viruses. 
What exactly is going around town and what can you do to prevent yourself from catching it?
    "Some are having general upper respiratory infections and some viral gastroenteritis, or stomach bugs," Kristina Halberg, the Head Nurse Practitioner at Community Med Urgent Care said. "We are also seeing a little bit of the strep throat going around the community right now. Even some hand, foot and mouth."
More people are sick because kids are in school and people are out and about with Christmas close by.
But there is more to it than just spreading germs.
    "We are under a little bit of increased stress at this time of the year," Halberg said. "Our bodies get a little bit weaker and our immune system gets a little weaker as a result. We see that kind of spread this time of year more than other times of year."
Halberg said there are a few cases of the flu going around, but she's seen numerous patients with an extended stomach flu.
    "Some of the viral gastroenteritis that we're having with the stomach bugs are lasting about three to five days," Halberg said. "Typically the nausea and vomiting are lasting around the 24 hour mark."
It is not just viruses.
With the temperatures fluctuating, it is leading to upper respiratory problems for some, particularly those with asthma and bad allergies.
Halberg said people are also struggling with sinus problems because of dusty fake Christmas trees.
While there are a lot of different bugs circulating Texoma, there are things you can do.
Halberg said it is important to wash your hands with soap and water, wipe things down and cover your mouth with your elbow to prevent spreading germs.
She said most of these symptoms can be treated by over the counter medication.
But if you are sick for an extended amount of time, go to the doctor to get checked out.

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