Sneezing, coughing, watery eyes, runny nose, and more. Sound familiar? About 10 to 20 percent of Americans will get Influenza, also called the flu, each year. Most people feel better after one or two weeks. However, for some people, the flu can lead to more serious diseases, such as pneumonia.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the single best way to prevent seasonal flu is to get vaccinated each year. The flu vaccine works by exposing the immune system to an inactive form of the flu virus. This allows the body to build antibodies. Getting a flu shot may reduce the risk of catching the flu and reduce the severity of infections, but it doesn’t protect from the common cold.
There are things that can be done to help lower the risk of catching colds and provide additional protection from the flu.
• Get the flu vaccine!
• Wash hands often with soap and water.
• Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
• Stay home when feeling sick.