October 6, 2022

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RCAHD Neighborhood Column: Flu Season

Influenza (the “flu”) is a typical, typically depressing, and generally very severe sickness. The signs of basic influenza embody the abrupt onset of fever, sore throat, headache, cough, muscle aches, and fatigue. Yearly, influenza kills between 12,000 and 50,000 folks in the USA.

Influenza viruses are continually altering, however what doesn’t change is that flu photographs are the perfect software we have now to fight influenza. Annual flu vaccination is really useful for everybody older than the age of 6 months. That is particularly vital for ladies who can be pregnant throughout the flu season, individuals with persistent illnesses or immunosuppressive problems, and residents of assisted dwelling or long-term care amenities.

How is influenza unfold?

The first mode of influenza transmission is thru giant, virus-laden respiratory particles referred to as droplets. When an contaminated particular person coughs or sneezes, they generate droplets that may journey as much as 6 toes or extra. When somebody close to the contaminated particular person breathes the droplets in, they’ll decide on the mucous surfaces of the higher respiratory tract, which may result in an infection.

What are among the problems of the flu?

Most individuals who develop influenza get better with none problems. Nonetheless, the aged, younger kids, and people with underlying medical circumstances similar to persistent coronary heart or lung illness or diabetes are extra prone to extra severe problems. These problems can embody pneumonia and the worsening of underlying medical circumstances.

What are the perfect methods to stop the flu?

Seasonal influenza an infection is preventable. Annual vaccination in opposition to influenza is one of the simplest ways to guard in opposition to severe sickness.

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We are sometimes requested, “Can I get influenza from getting a flu shot?” The reply is “No,” the flu shot doesn’t trigger the flu. The influenza viruses contained in a flu shot are inactivated (killed), which implies they can not trigger an infection. Flu vaccine producers kill the viruses used within the vaccine-making course of, and batches of flu vaccine are examined to ensure they’re protected.

Some extra steps you’ll be able to take to stop the flu embody:

Wash palms typically with cleaning soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub.
Keep away from touching your eyes, nostril, or mouth. Germs and viruses that trigger sickness may be unfold this manner.
Cowl your nostril and mouth with a tissue whenever you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue within the trash afterwards, and wash your palms.
In case you are sick with a flu-like sickness, keep residence for a minimum of 48 hours after your final fever with out using fever-reducing medication.
Discover extra ideas at cdc.gov/flu/ shopper/prevention.htm.

Influenza vaccines are very protected. Annually tens of hundreds of thousands of doses of vaccine are utilized in the USA and in depth surveillance confirms vaccine security. Within the U.S., as a result of flu exercise sometimes peaks between December and February, September and October are the perfect instances to get vaccinated. Ideally, everybody ought to be vaccinated by the tip of October, nonetheless; even after October, vaccination remains to be really useful as a result of vital flu exercise can proceed into the late spring.