The CDC recently reported that flu activity lessened through the 2020-2021 year, contributing to dramatically fewer illnesses, hospitalizations, and deaths compared to the previous flu seasons. The ongoing pandemic created measures such as face masks, hand sanitizers, and stay-at-home orders that contributed to the decline of the flu within the last year. However, when it comes to vaccinations, only 50 to 55% of people received their flu vaccinations last year, marking no significant change in the number of people receiving their flu shots from the 2019-2020 year.
The flu virus is extremely common, but with the onset of the flu season arriving this fall, the combinations of the flu with the recent arrival of the delta, lambda, and gamma variants throughout the United States has made it essential to take precautions. It is necessary to help mitigate risks and protect others from getting ill from the flu or the Covid-19 virus. We’re here to help inform you on the best ways to care for yourself when sick and learn when you need to seek treatment through this small guide.
Why You Should Receive The Flu Shot This Season
Getting your annual flu vaccine will not only help mitigate the flu but will also help protect others against it and ultimately continue to reduce the amount of illness and hospitalizations that occur for those most vulnerable to illness. As covid vaccinations continue to get distributed, the flu vaccination has been able to help medical organizations gather data on the effectiveness of the covid and flu vaccines. More importantly, getting your seasonal vaccination will also allow your immune system to recognize the latest variants of the flu virus and provide your body with an extra boost during the fall, winter, and spring seasons.
However, if you do get sick with the flu, there are some simple tasks you can do to help you recover as quickly as possible, including:
- Stay at home and get plenty of rest
- Treat aches and fevers with over-the-counter medications (ibuprofen, acetaminophen, etc.)
- Keep hydrated with fluids such as water, soup, and fruit juices
- Use humidifiers and lozenges to help alleviate coughing symptoms
These few tips can be used at any point during the fall season to help you recover as quickly as possible. To determine whether or not you have either Covid or the flu, contacting your primary care doctor and ask for a Covid test. If you plan on getting the Covid vaccine, your Covid and flu vaccine should be spaced 14 days apart to work effectively.
When To Visit An Urgent Care with the Flu
Luckily, most people who get the flu only have mild symptoms. For those with mild symptoms including coughing, sneezing, fever, body aches, and runny noses, staying at home and avoiding contact with others will allow you to recover peacefully. However, those at high risk for illness can get flu-related complications, making them more vulnerable to worsening chronic conditions, severe muscle pain, difficulty breathing, and persistent pain throughout the chest area. In cases of severe symptoms, visits to an urgent care facility are necessary.