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Caring for Someone with the Flu

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Keep your loved one comfortable and follow the recommendations of his or her health care provider.

Keep others in the home healthy by washing hands and household surfaces frequently.

Ensure that all medications are taken as directed.

Keep your loved one in a separate space from other members of the household.

Everyone in the home, including the sick person, should clean their hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub frequently.

Get immediate medical care if your loved one experiences:

Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath

Purple or blue discoloration of the lips

Pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen

Sudden dizziness


Severe or persistent vomiting


Flu-like symptoms that improve, but then return with fever and worse cough

How to keep yourself and others from getting the flu?

Keep the sick person away from other people as much as possible, especially those who are at high risk of complications from the flu. You can do this in your home by creating a sick room. Keep your loved one in a room away from common areas of the house. If you have more than one bathroom, have the sick person use one and well people use the other. Clean the sick room and bathroom daily with household disinfectant. The sick person should not have visitors other than caregivers. An email, text message, or phone call is safer than a visit.


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