Flu season is off to an early start and many states are starting to feel the effects already. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says it could be a bad season, and reports Pennsylvania is seeing sporadic flu activity, while other states are seeing widespread flu. There’s still enough time to educate and protect yourself and your family from the flu this year.
The flu is contracted by inhaling respiratory droplets produced by coughing or sneezing. You can also become infected by touching an object contaminated by the flu virus (possibly from a hand that covered a sneeze) and then touching your mouth, nose or eyes. Symptoms of flu include a high fever, dry cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, headache, extreme tiredness, muscle aches and shortness of breath.
Avoid spreading or getting the flu by:
- Washing your hands often.
- Coughing into a tissue or the inside of your elbow instead of your bare hand.
- Getting a flu shot.
It is not too late to be vaccinated against the virus. But, keep in mind that it takes two about weeks from the time the shot is given for you to develop maximum protection.