As we head towards spring, the flu continues to remain on the rise in Colorado. There have been more hospitalizations each week, as well as some deaths. According to Colorado.gov, there were another 153 hospital admissions due to the flu, by the end of the week of February 4. This brings flu hospital admissions to 1,271 for this flu season.
So are you and your family protected from the flu? Have you had a check up with your doctor and discussed an action plan? Did they recommend the flu shot? It’s important to be prepared for the flu because when it hits, it hits hard.
There are many important things to do in order to protect yourself from the flu.
- The flu shot is the number one thing people should do to avoid getting the flu. It is especially recommended for kids, elderly, pregnant women and anyone with respiratory or other illnesses.
- Washing your hands is another easy tip to keep yourself healthy during flu season. Germs stay on countertops, doorknobs, faucet handles, computers, and more. We also tend to touch our faces more than we realize. It doesn’t take much to come in contact with germs and then unknowingly touch our face, which can cause us to get sick.
- Taking vitamins, including extra Vitamin C can help prevent illness. If you feel a scratchy throat or sinus pain/pressure, maybe try some Emergen-C for that extra boost of Vitamin C. Also make sure to drink lots of fluids to stay hydrated.
- Don’t skip out on daily medications. It’s easy to be running late or very tired and either forget or skip parts of our daily routine. Falling behind on medications can affect our bodies. If you forget your inhaler, Vitamin D, Vitamin C, etc. your immune system may become compromised. If you come into contact with germs, it will make it easier to become sick.
- With school in session, another thing to do to prevent spreading germs is to bleach any toys around the house. Whether your child caught a cold at school or they had friends over who were sick, this is a good way to disinfect and get rid of germs before the family gets sick.
There are also many flu symptoms to look out for.
- Fever and/or chills
- Sinus pain and/or pressure
- Sore throat
- Runny and/or stuff nose
- Aches in the body or muscles
If you experience any of these symptoms, contact your physician. It’s best to get in quickly and get a flu test, rather than waiting for the symptoms to continue to build up. If you test positive for the flu, they can call in a prescription for Tamiflu which will help with symptoms. The influenza test only rules in but does not rule out influenza. For those with other health issues, complications from the flu can arise. This is why it’s important to stay healthy. Start by getting your flu shot and keeping your immune system strong. Don’t let the flu knock you down!