Flu Immunization in Cullman, AL
What Is the Flu?
Influenza, or the flu, is a seasonal and very common illness. Each year the influenza virus evolves, making it difficult to prevent long-term. Therefore, it is recommended that you and your child get a flu vaccine each year during flu season near the beginning of fall.
Even though the symptoms are similar to the common cold, they can become severe enough to lead to other illnesses and even cause death. On average 20,000 children under the age of 5 are hospitalized due to the flu, and nearly 140 pediatric deaths are related to it.
When Is the Flu Season?
The flu season starts in October, peaks in December through February and can last through May. Getting the flu shot for yourself and your family is best completed by the end of October. It takes two weeks for the immunity to kick in, so don’t wait until the flu is rampant in your area. Keep in mind, you can still get a shot late in the season.
This year, the flu could be severe. It has been reduced the last few years due to the COVID restrictions.
Why Is the Flu A Serious Disease?
Every year there are millions of cases, several hundred thousand hospitalizations, and tens of thousands of deaths. In a normal flu season 40,000 deaths can occur. Many of those deaths are children.
Both Flu And COVID Will Still Be Around
Some people could have the flu and COVID at the same time this season, overwhelming our healthcare system. Get protected from both — it is possible to get both vaccines at the same time.
You need a specific vaccine to protect you from each virus. The flu shot won’t protect you from COVID and vice versa.
If you have a well care visit coming up, ask for both vaccines to be administered. Of course you can visit almost any pharmacy or other clinic to receive the shot.
Double Dose For First Time Flu Shots
If your child is receiving their first flu vaccine, they need to get two shots several weeks apart to boost their immunity. Talk to your doctor about the specifics.
What Are the Symptoms of the Flu?
The flu bug hits you quite suddenly. That is one of its telltale signs, whereas a cold usually comes on gradually.
Look for the following symptoms:
- Sore throat and cough
- Runny nose
- Muscle aches
- Vomiting and diarrhea
How to Prevent Getting the Flu?
There are a number of measures that the CDC recommends that you and your child should take to avoid getting and spreading the flu. These include:
Avoid close contact. Especially contact with those who are sick. When you are sick you should also avoid contact with others.
Stay home when you are sick. Not only will this help prevent the spread of germs, but it will ensure that you don’t over-exert yourself if you are sick.
Cover your mouth and nose. Sneezing and coughing are the easiest ways for viruses to spread. Cover your mouth if you are sick.
Keep your hands clean. Wash your hands often, not just when you use the restroom. You pick up a lot of germs on your hands throughout the day, and if you’re out in public during flu season, there’s a good chance you’ll pick up the flu.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Even if you keep your hands clean, viruses easily enter the body through the orifices on your face.
Practice good health habits. Make sure to disinfect surfaces that are touched a lot. For example, wipe down a shopping cart handle with a wipe before using. Additionally, make sure you get plenty of sleep, eat nutritious food and drink a lot of fluids.
Make sure you teach these good habits to your child so when they are not by your side, they will help prevent the flu from spreading.
Schedule an Appointment for the Flu Vaccine and Treatment in Cullman, AL
With COVID, strep and other respiratory illnesses coming at us, here is a valuable chart to help you decipher the symptoms. Good Hope Medical may also want to conduct tests to determine the cause of your symptoms and the treatment available. Keeping your family safe from illness is a parent’s responsibility. Protection is always easier than the treatment. To make an appointment for a flu shot or if you have questions about the flu season and preparing your family, please call (256) 615-2055 and schedule your visit at our urgent care clinic in Cullman, AL.