Protect yourself from the flu this season
Jan. 22, 2013 — It’s the time of year when people come down with the flu, so now is the time to take precautions.
Dr. Hal Meadows said, “The first line of prevention is not being exposed to the illness.”
Meadows suggested three important items to remember are:
Stay home if you’re sick so you don’t pass on the illness to others, wash your hands frequently and cover your mouth when you cough as coughing is one of the most frequent methods of transmitting the virus.
Immunizations are also recommended. Meadows mentioned a recent study that said if someone with the flu rode on an airliner, the passengers who were not immunized had approximately a 90 percent chance of catching it because it’s a closed environment.
Although there continue to be concerns about immunizations, Meadows feels in the past dozen years there have not been major reactions to the vaccine.
“It appears to be a fairly effective vaccine,” said Meadows.
Meadows said each year the flu immunizations are modified based on studies of the previous year’s virus.
“They anticipate how the virus will change,” he said.
The East Coast seems to have been hit hard with the flu, according to Meadows.
He said he was not sure why it hit harder here than the West Coast, but it does appear where people are not immunized, the flu becomes epidemic.
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