Flu - How you can help yourself

Todays headline caught my eye!....

' Flu outbreak: Cases of flu DOUBLE as illness kills DOZENS in the last three months'

Whilst some cases of Flu can be fatal, most people will recover in 7-10 days, with the worse symptoms subsiding in around 4. 

What can you realistically do to help prevent getting the flu?

The flu vaccine is the current best protection against the flu virus, however it should be noted that it doesn't cover all possible strains, but it does cover the most predominant ones. 

The Flu jab is available for free for certain groups of people. 

  • Pregnant Women - figures show that more than half of pregnant women have not yet had the jab

  • Over 65's - 3 in 10 over 65's have not had the jab yet

  • Children & Adults with certain health conditions

  • Children & Adults with weakened immune systems 

  • Children aged 2 & 3

  • Children in Reception class through to year 5

If you do not fall under any of these categories then pharmacies and supermarkets do offer a flu vaccine for a fee. A quick search on the internet for 'Where can i get a flu jab' will bring up a large list of places offering the vaccine! 

For more information on the Flu vaccine take a look at the NHS website:  https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/vaccinations/flu-influenza-vaccine/

Is there anything I can do on top of having the vaccine? 

There are number of self help steps you can take to help protect you and your family from getting the Flu. 

  • Avoid close contact with those who are sick

  • If you have Flu like symptoms then stay away from school/work until after your fever has passed

  • Tissues! Make sure that you sneeze, cough and blow into tissues. Bin them and wash your hands after too. 

  • Clean your hands frequently and especially before eating. 

  • Encourage children to follow the steps above - even if they have had the vaccine

What are the symptoms of Flu?

We often get confused over whether it's a cold or the flu so what are the differences and how can we tell? 

If you are unfortunate and get flu, stay at home and rest. Drink plenty of fluids and take over the counter medicines to help with the fever. 

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