What you need to know about the late-season flu

'Healthy Living'

What you need to know about the late-season flu

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports the flu vaccine is nearly 60 percent effective this year, which emphasizes the importance of getting vaccinated.

While vaccine effectiveness is up, flu season started slightly later this year, and the CDC warns activity is on the upswing, especially among young adults. It’s not too late to get the vaccine if you have yet to do so.

“The CDC recommends vaccines for everyone 6 months of age and older,” said Grace Adeniji-ilesanmi, family nurse practitioner at Unum’s Chattanooga office. “If you start to experience flu-like symptoms – fever, body aches, sore throat and cough – contact your doctor to get started on an anti-viral drug.  Studies show they work best when started within two days of getting sick.”

There are several ways you can help protect yourself against the spread of germs:

  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water
  • Cover your nose and mouth when you sneeze or cough
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • If you are sick with flu-like symptoms, stay home until you have been fever-free for 24 hours
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