Doctors see influx of patients with flu-like symptoms

BENTON, Tenn. (WDEF) — More and more school districts are closing due to sickness.
Marion County Schools will be closed tomorrow through Friday. It’s the same with Monroe County, Sweetwater City, Bradley County and Cleveland City Schools.

On Wednesday Polk County Schools were closed and they will also be closed tomorrow, because a large amount of students have flu like symptoms.

Doctors in the area are calling this a mild to moderate epidemic and they don’t think it will go away anytime soon.

It was all quiet outside of Benton Elementary School on Tuesday. No students were in sight and the playground was deserted.

Inside, the sounds of cleaning could be heard.

Dr. Terry Parsons, with the Benton Family Heathcare Center, says the flu is a big problem right now.

“I think we are in the midst of a mild to moderate epidemic. I think it is kind of an increase in prevalence and I expect that to increase probably in a number of cases over the next four to six weeks,” Dr. Parsons said.

There will be another surge of cases before it is over.

“In my reading and experience with the particular strain of flu, it almost tends to build up overtime and it kind of peaks over a period of about a month or so and then it goes down. Some flu seasons you will have more than one strain, that can coexist or occur at the same time, but a lot of times you will have another peak later on in the winter,” Dr. Parsons said.

Lately the Benton Family Heathcare Center has been busy.

“Almost every day we see someone who has flu or strep there is a significant strep epidemic as well.”

Dr. Parsons wants to remind people hygiene is very important

“Be very careful or mindful of whenever you touch your face with your hands. Try to make sure your hands are clean. So either with soap or water or a hand sanitizer.”

Back at Benton Elementary school, class will be cancelled again on Wednesday and cleaning crews are also making sure to stay safe.

Categories: Health, Local News, Polk County

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