Flu Season Has Begun - Time to Get Vaccinated

This week marks National Influenza Vaccination Week.  Flu season has already begun, and it is important to get vaccinated if you have not already.  Each year, as many as 20% of Americans catch the flu, with the elderly and young children being most at risk.

Flu viruses spread from person to person mainly through coughing and sneezing, but can be spread in other ways.  Most adults can pass the flu on to others before symptoms are present, which is why it is important to be vaccinated.

There are two ways you can protect yourself from the flu this season.  The traditional flu shot and the newer nasal spray have both been proven effective against the flu.  Ask your doctor which method of vaccination is right for you.

While it is important that everyone get vaccinated, certain groups are more at risk of having serious flu complications.  Children between the ages of 6 months and 5 years, the elderly and individuals living in long-term care facilities are more at risk of contracting the flu and should be vaccinated before peak flu season in January.

As a nurse, I understand the benefits of being vaccinated.  Please consult your physician and schedule a time for your vaccination.  You may also visit www.flucliniclocator.org to find a clinic near you.