It’s that time of year again. The weather is getting colder, the days are getting shorter, and it’s time to celebrate a fun holiday season. There are many ways to celebrate the holidays, but one way you don’t want to spend them is at home in bed with the flu. If you haven’t gotten your annual flu shot yet, it’s time to roll up your sleeves and head over to the closest TrustCare Express Medical Clinic to get one. If you have already started to experience symptoms of the flu, we can treat those, too.
What Is The Flu?
The flu is an often misunderstood disease, a term that people throw around lightly to cover anything from a bad case of the common cold to a stomach bug. However, the flu is much more serious than that. The flu, which is short for influenza, is a highly contagious infection of the respiratory system. A case of the flu can find you confined to your bed for days, with a high fever, aches and pains, weakness, and fatigue. Symptoms of the flu often come seemingly out of nowhere.
The flu mutates every year, which is why you should get an updated vaccine annually. There are two main strains, influenza A and B, with two other minor ones, C and D. The latter of the four types aren’t a major concern to human populations.
What Kind Of Flu Prevention Is Available?
The Centers For Disease Control (CDC) recommends that every person over the age of six months be vaccinated annually, with some exceptions. These exceptions are those who have a severe allergy to an ingredient in the vaccine, those with a history of certain neurological illnesses, and anyone who is sick or not feeling well. If you fall into one of those categories, please discuss your options with your primary care physician to determine if you’re eligible.
If you haven’t gotten your vaccine yet, now is the time to do it, as it takes two weeks for the shot to become effective. The CDC recommends that people get a flu vaccine by the end of October. Getting vaccinated later, however, can still be beneficial even into January or later.
Why Is This Protection So Important?
As stated above, the flu is so much more than just a bad cold—it’s actually a serious infection in the respiratory system and can be deadly. Flu season starts to ramp up in November, with the peak season in Jackson last year falling in December, and lasting well into the spring. Deaths from influenza can be challenging to properly report, but numbers from the CDC have shown anywhere from 12,000 to 56,000 reported deaths in different flu seasons in the past six years. The CDC has an interactive page on their website where you can follow key statistics of the 2018-19 flu season.
What If I Already Feel Sick?
Don’t put off getting the care you need. You can stop by one of the convenient TrustCare Express Medical Clinic locations to be treated for winter colds or flu. Our locations cater to patients four years and older. Our caring team is ready to help you Feel Better Faster this holiday season.