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How Can I Avoid the Flu?
Vaccination is simply the best way to protect your body from the dangers of the influenza virus. If the active strain of the flu virus happens to be a different strain than the one used in the vaccine, there are additional steps you can take to keep your family and yourself healthy this flu season from Los Angeles to Washington D.C.
- Even though the flu vaccine is not always effective, everyone six months of age and older should get vaccinated against the flu.This is particularly important for the elderly, the infirm and the very young.
- Always take everyday precautions, like washing your hands, to protect your health.
- If you are exposed to or caring for someone with the flu, talk to a doctor about preventive antiviral medications. If the signs and symptoms of the flu appear, contact your doctor immediately and discuss Tamiflu.
What kind of everyday steps can I take to stop the spread of germs?
There are steps you can take in your daily life to help protect you from getting the flu.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water, or an alcohol-based disinfectant hand scrub.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth. Germs spread through mucous membranes.
- If it is possible, you should try to avoid close contact with sick people.
- Practice good health habits like getting plenty of sleep; plenty of exercise; take time to manage your stress, drink plenty of clear fluids and always try to eat healthy food.
- Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it. If you are unable to sneeze into a tissue, you should sneeze into your upper arm.
- If you are sick with flu-like illness, stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone without the use of fever-reducing medicine like acetaminophen.
Are there medications I can take to prevent getting the flu?
If you are healthy but exposed to a person with the flu, antiviral drugs like Tamiflu can prevent you from getting sick or staying sick as long. The sooner you are treated with an antiviral, the more likely it will prevent the flu. Antiviral drugs are 70% to 90% effective at preventing the flu. Talk to a doctor if you think you need antiviral drugs.
Posted by: Michelle Germann
Created on: Wed 16 January 2013 08:07
Last modified: Wed 16 January 2013 08:20