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Influenza Minimize

 

                                                                                                                                  
Things to know about the Flu - 2014-2015 
 
                                                     
  • Once again, flu vaccine is recommended for everyone over the age of 6 months per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (with a few exceptions)
  • You CANNOT get the flu from the flu vaccine! 
  • However, if you get vaccinated, you can still get the flu! However, the vaccine tends to make the illness less severe.
  • Get vaccinated as soon as you can. (think October!)  It will take about two weeks for the vaccine to start working.
  • You may be able to get the vaccine without getting a shot.  Ask your doctor if you qualify!
  • Find out where you can get vaccinated!  www.Flu.gov.
  • Other ways to avoid getting the flu - 1) Wash your hands frequently!  2) Limit contact with those who are sick.
  • Taking viral medication within the first 2 days of illness can reduce severity of symptoms. 
  • Children under age 9 may need two vaccinations.  Ask your pediatrician for more specific information.      
  • Different types of vaccinations can have different age requirements.  Make sure you qualify for the type of vaccination you have chosen to get.                                    
According to the CDC, the following groups of people have a greater risk of complications from getting the flu and are especially encouraged to get vaccinated:
  • Pregnant women
  • Children younger than 5 years (but 6 months or older) and their household contacts
  • Health care workers or those who live with a health care worker
  • People who have chronic health problems, including lung, heart, kidney or liver disease, diabetes, anemia, weakened immune system, severe asthma, etc. and their household contacts.
  • People who live in a nursing home or extended care facilities                                                                     
You should NOT get the vaccine if you:
  • Have had a severe allergic reaction to vaccine ingredients, chickens or eggs (a mild egg allergy is generally ok)
  • Have a fever or illness other than a cold
  • Had a moderate to severe reaction after getting a previous flu vaccine
  • Developed Guillain-Barre syndrome within 6 weeks after receiving a flu vaccine
Talk to your doctor if you have any concerns or questions. 
 
Information is from the U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health and the Center for Disease Control.
                                                                 
 
 
Don't treat your sniffles until you read this!
 
 Cold, Flu, or Allergy? from NIH News in Health Newsletter
 

Symptoms

Cold

Flu

Airborne Allergy

Fever

Rare

Usual, high (100-102 °F), sometimes higher, especially in young children); lasts 3-4 days

Never

Headache

Uncommon

Common

Uncommon

General Aches, Pains

Slight

Usual; often severe

Never

Fatigue, Weakness

Sometimes

Usual, can last up to 3 weeks

Sometimes

Extreme Exhaustion

Never

Usual, at the beginning of the illness

Never

Stuffy, Runny Nose

Common

Sometimes

Common

Sneezing

Usual

Sometimes

Usual

Sore Throat

Common

Sometimes

Sometimes

Cough

Common

Common, can become severe

Sometimes

Chest Discomfort

Mild to moderate

Common

Rare, except for those with allergic asthma

Treatment

Get plenty of rest.
Stay hydrated. (Drink plenty of fluids.)
Decongestants 
Aspirin, acetaminophen, or ibuprofen for aches and pains

Get plenty of rest.
Stay hydrated. 
Aspirin, acetaminophen, or ibuprofen for aches, pains, and fever 
Antiviral medicines (see your doctor)

Avoid allergens (things that you’re allergic to)
Antihistamines 
Nasal steroids 
Decongestants

Prevention

Wash your hands often.
Avoid close contact with anyone who has a cold.

Get the flu vaccine each year. 
Wash your hands often.
Avoid close contact with anyone who has the flu.

Avoid allergens, such as pollen, house dust mites, mold, pet dander, cockroaches.

Complications

Sinus infection middle ear infection, asthma

Bronchitis, pneumonia; can be life-threatening

Sinus infection, middle ear infection, asthma

 

 

 

 

 

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