Influenza (flu) is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses that infect the nose, throat, and sometimes the lungs. It can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. Flu usually comes on suddenly and the symptoms of flu can include fever, sore throat, cough, muscle and body aches and fatigue.
The best way to prevent the flu is by getting a vaccine each year. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), getting a flu vaccine is more important than ever during 2020-2021 to protect yourself and the people around you from influenza, and to help reduce the strain on healthcare systems responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.
When to Get Vaccinated?
Getting vaccinated can lower your chances of getting the flu. While you can get a vaccine anytime during flu season, the timing does matter.
The flu virus is around all year, but it spreads more easily from September through the spring, generally peaking between December and February. It takes about 2 weeks to develop enough antibodies from the flu vaccine to protect you against the flu. Based on this research, it is recommended that you get vaccinated between early September and late October every year.
Who Should Get Vaccinated?
Almost everyone over 6 months of age can benefit from a flu vaccine. Very young children and elderly patients are at increased risk of serious flu complications as well as those with underlying chronic health conditions. The flu vaccine is safe for most people and is encouraged to prevent this serious illness. Talk with your healthcare provider today to see if a flu vaccine is right for you.
American Family Care is stocked with flu shots and they are available on a walk-in basis without an appointment. It’s never been easier to protect yourself and your family from this dangerous health concern. Stop by one of our many locations today!