Arm Yourself Against the Flu

Arm Yourself Against the Flu

Before cold and flu season strikes, here’s what to know about vaccinations.

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) states that “All adults need immunizations to help them prevent getting and spreading serious diseases that could result in poor health, missed work, medical bills, and not being able to care for family.”

Their recommendations include the Tdap vaccine (if not received as an adolescent), a Td (tetanus, diphtheria) booster shot every 10 years, and a seasonal flu (influenza) vaccine every year.

The flu vaccine is recommended for anyone over 6 months of age and especially for seniors, children, and individuals with chronic health conditions.

Seasonal flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by flu viruses. Flu can be spread through two routes: inhaling droplets from people with flu when they sneeze, cough or talk; touching a surface or object that has the flu virus on it and then touching your mouth, eyes or nose.

Flu symptoms can range from mild to severe. In the United States, flu season occurs in the fall and winter with the activity peaks in January or February. However, flu season can start as early as October and last as late as May.

As October is approaching, there are a few steps you can take to protect yourself.

  • Arm yourself: Get that flu shot.

  • Encourage your loved ones, including children 6 months of age and older, to get a flu shot.

  • Get adequate daily nutrition, exercise, and rest.

  • Frequently wash your hands. Warm water, soap, and friction work better than hand sanitizer.

  • Avoid contact with people who have cold and flu symptoms.

  • Stay home if you are sick with flu.

If you are concerned that you are behind on immunizations then a good place to start is with the Adult Vaccine Quiz, an online assessment tool.

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