Flu Season

The official Flu season will be in full swing soon.

The season usually runs from September to February with it peaking in January. With this crazy weather approaching us again, 80's one day, 50's the next, it makes us all very vulnerable in catching and spreading the virus.

The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses that infect the nose, throat and lungs. It affects each person differently. It can be a mild illness to a severe illness, and at times can lead to death. The best prevention each year is the flu vaccine.

Local area pharmacies and the health department are now offering the vaccine.

Signs and Symptoms: Fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle and body aches, headaches, fatigue (very tired), vomiting, and diarrhea. (*Remember, each person is affected differently so you may show some of these signs, but not all of them).

How does it spread? The flu is spread by droplets when someone sneezes, coughs or talks. Germs enter the body through mucus membranes such as our nose, eyes, and mouth.You can also catch the flu by touching door knobs, desks, and other objects that have been touched by someone who is infected with the virus and then touching your eyes, nose and mouth.

The contagious period runs from day 1 when the infected person starts developing symptoms and then can last 5 to 7 days after becoming sick.Those with a weak immune system can infect others for a longer period of time.

The best way to help lessen the spread of the flu is to make sure that you cover your mouth when you cough - use a tissue, or cough into your shirt/jacket sleeve. When sneezing please cover your nose with a tissue or sneeze into your sleeve. Always wash your hands when you are sick before touching something or somebody. Wash countertops, door knobs, and other surfaces clean with a clorox wipe. Also, remember to wash all blankets and pillow cases to help decrease the spread among family members. Also, you will want to change to a new toothbrush when you recover from the flu; germs stay imbedded in the toothbrush and can reinfect you with the virus.

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact me. 304-724-3303.

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