The 2012-2013 flu season is here, and it has hit Southern California harder than ever. This season’s influenza outbreak has been the worst in over a decade. There may be uncertainty about who should get a flu shot. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has worked with influenza vaccine manufacturers to provide specific guidelines to educate the public. The CDC advises anyone older than 6 months of age to get a flu shot as soon as the vaccine is available for the season. There are certain high-risk individuals who especially should get the vaccination:
- Household contacts and people who care for those younger than 5 years of age
- Healthcare personnel
- Expecting mothers, or those who wish to become pregnant
- Residents of nursing homes or other facilities
- Those afflicted with chronic conditions such as asthma, diabetes, heart disease
The following individuals should NOT get the vaccine:
- Anyone with a history of Guillan-Barré Syndrome
- Anyone with a history of egg allergies
- Children younger than 6 months (people who care for them should be vaccinated instead)
- Those that have a confirmed temperature exceeding 100.0 degrees Fahrenheit
Here are preventative measures to prevent germs from spreading:
- Do not have close contact with sick people or if you’re sick, limit your contact with others.
- If you have the flu, you should stay home at least 24 hours after your fever has dropped (with the exception of leaving home to see a doctor).
- When coughing or sneezing cover your nose and mouth with a tissue and dispose of it after.
- Try not to touch your eyes, nose, or mouth because these are areas that spread germs.
- Wash your hands with soap and water. If you do not have access to this, use an alcohol based hand sanitizer.
- Clean surfaces often that may harbor germs.
If you catch the flu virus, you will experience symptoms such as fever, coughing, body aches, chills, headaches, fatigue, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, and sometimes vomiting or diarrhea. It is significant to note that the flu illness does not always come with a fever. What do you do if you get sick? For most people, the flu will self-resolve. It is recommended to stay home, rest, and drink lots of liquids. If you are very worried about your illness or if you are one of the higher risk individuals, it is best to see a physician.
There is a lot of information available for consumers the CDC has made it available. If you have any doubts about getting vaccinated contact our doctors today.The information provided is for general interest only and should not be misconstrued as a diagnosis, prognosis or treatment recommendation. This information does not in any way constitute the practice of medicine, or any other health care profession. Readers are directed to consult their health care provider regarding their specific health situation. Marque Medical is not liable for any action taken by a reader based upon this information.