Flu, or Influenza, is a respiratory disease caused by a virus that attacks the nose, throat, and lungs. Illness is usually mild or moderate, not requiring hospitalization, but most likely causing you to miss work or school. At times flu can be severe, even leading to death. It is not the same as “stomach” flu.
Flu symptoms usually appear suddenly and can include:
- Dry cough
- Sore throat
- Extreme tiredness
- Body aches
Getting a flu shot is the right thing to do! Everyone 6 months of age and older should get flu vaccine every year. It will help protect you from getting the flu and prevents you from passing it to people who could get very sick, such as infants. For best protection get your flu shot in early fall before the flu season starts. But you can get it anytime during flu season which is typically October through April.
Myth: You can get the flu from a vaccination for influenza. This is not true. You may however, get a slight fever or discomfort after being vaccinated – this is a sign that your body is responding to the vaccine!
Fact: Washing your hands frequently helps prevent the spread of germs!
Your local public health agency, family clinic or local pharmacist is a great place to get your flu shot!
For more information about flu please visit the Minnesota Department of Health website at: https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/flu/basics/index.html