Flu Season is here: Collective Preventive Services advises persons at risk to consult family doctor

The Collective Preventive Services (CPS) is advising persons at risk to get their flu shot from their family doctor.

It is documented that one of the best ways to protect against the flu is to get vaccinated each year. Influenza is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses, and people of any age can get it.  

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It can be a mild to severe illness which at times can lead to death. One of the best ways to reduce the chances of getting seasonal flu and lessen the chance to transmit it to others is to get a ‘flu shot.’ Other ways are to take preventive measures or good health habits.

The influenza vaccine protects against seasonal flu. Influenza is not just a common cold. The ‘flu shot’ is given with a needle, usually in the arm.

Like with all vaccines given, the body develops antibodies when one gets the flu vaccine. These antibodies provide protection against infection with the only viruses that the vaccine is made of.

Persons who are at risk and should take their seasonal flu vaccine include: person’s 65-years and older; pregnant women, persons with chronic medical conditions such as asthma, diabetes, or heart disease, and persons with immune compromised conditions.

Persons who live in nursing homes and other long term care facilities and health care workers should also get their flu shot.

Good health habits that are essential and protect against the flu include covering your cough and washing your hands often which can help stop the spread of germs and prevent respiratory illnesses like the flu.

Avoid close contact with people who are sick, and keep your distance from others to protect them from getting too sick. Follow your doctor’s advice; stay home when you are sick. It helps prevent others from catching your illness.

Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or cough in your elbow, when you need to cough and sneeze, it may prevent those around you from getting sick.

Germs often spread when a person touches something that is contaminated with germs and then touches his or her eyes, nose, or mouth.

Practice other good health habits such as getting plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage stress, drink plenty of fluids, and strive to maintain a nutritious diet.

Persons are recommended to check with their family doctor concerning the flu vaccine and any additional information that you are interested in receiving.