The Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that Flu activity is low in the USA, but flu outbreaks can happen as early as October. Flu causes millions of illnesses, hospitalization and thousands of deaths every season. This season’s vaccines have been updated to better match circulating viruses. The CDC recommends a yearly flu vaccine for every 6 months and older. Even though, the vaccine effectiveness can vary, flu vaccine is the best way to protect against flu. The flu vaccination can reduce flu illnesses, hospitalizations, doctors’ visits and missed work and school days.
It takes about two weeks after vaccination for protection to set in, so take action and start thinking about getting vaccinated now.
You may have the flu if you have some or all of these symptoms:
- Sore throat
- Runny or stuffy nose
- Body aches
- Sometimes diarrhea and vomiting
It’s important to note that not everyone with flu will have a fever. Most people with the flu have mild illness and do not need medical care or antiviral drugs. If you get sick with flu symptoms, you should stay home and avoid contact with other people except to get medical care.
If you have symptoms of flu and are in a high risk group, or are very sick or worried illness, contact your health care provider (doctor, Physician’s assistant or nurse practitioner). The Durham County Department of Public Health (919 560-7600) can assist you and your family with the flu vaccine.