Flu season can be scary. The big question is whether or not to get the flu shot! That is a personal decision but the Center for Disease Control and the National Institute of Health do recommend a yearly flu shot.
The flu is spread by tiny droplets in the air from an infected person when they cough, sneeze or talk. We inhale the virus and it incubates (grows) in our bodies. We see signs and symptoms within one to four days.
Signs and Symptoms of Flu (as reported by the CDC)
People who have the flu often feel some or all of these signs and symptoms:
- Fever* or feeling feverish/chills
- Sore throat
- Runny or stuffy nose
- Muscle or body aches
- Fatigue (very tired)
- Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults.
*It’s important to note that not everyone with flu will have a fever.
All people are at risk for getting the flu but the people at most risk are: people 65 years and older, people of any age with certain chronic medical conditions (such as asthma, diabetes, or heart disease), pregnant women, and young children.
Complications of flu do exist. The risks are much higher in those mentioned above. Complications can include: bacterial pneumonia, ear infections, sinus infections, dehydration, and worsening of chronic medical conditions, such as congestive heart failure, asthma, or diabetes.
Your best treatment is PREVENTION! The first and most important step in preventing flu is to get a flu vaccination each year. CDC also recommends everyday preventive actions (like staying away from people who are sick, covering coughs and sneezes and frequent hand washing) to help slow the spread of germs that cause respiratory (nose, throat, and lungs) illnesses, like flu.
If you think you or a family member has the flu see your doctor. He or she will be able to prescribe or recommend the best treatment.
Have a happy and healthy flu season.
Visit the CDC for full articles related to Flu Season.
Dana White has been a nurse for over 25 years and has been cycling since she was very young.. She has health and cycling tips that aim to impact lives, She is an avid cyclist and jokes that her mom is in the Guinness book of world records for being the first woman to give birth to Dana and then to a bicycle.