Flu season in the United States can begin as early as October and continue as late as May. To help prevent getting sick, the Centers for Disease Control makes these recommendations:
• Everyone over the age of 6 months should get an annual flu shot – only injectable flu shots (not the nasal spray vaccine) are recommended for use this season.
• Wash your hands often with soap and water.
• Practice healthy habits such as eating a balanced diet, getting enough sleep, exercising and keeping stress in check.
• Work with your physician to identify risk factors and create a treatment plan.
How Do I Know if It’s Flu and Not Just a Bad Cold?
Like colds, flu can cause a stuffy or runny nose, sneezing, sore throat and watery eyes. However, symptoms of flu are generally more intense than colds and come on more abruptly and more likely include fever, headache, chills, dry cough, sore throat, body aches and fatigue.
Did You Know?
• The flu is a respiratory virus, not a stomach or intestinal disease.
• You cannot get the flu from the flu shot.
• Since the flu is viral, not bacterial, antibiotics don’t work against it.
If You Get Sick…
• Cover your cough.
• Sneeze into a tissue or your upper sleeve; not into your hands.
• Stay home from work and keep kids home from school to prevent the spread of flu.
• Drink plenty of clear liquids to stay hydrated.
Make an appointment with Overlake Clinics today to schedule a flu shot or if you are already suffering from cold or flu symptoms.