Chilly weather could be contributing to the state's 'widespread' flu epidemic

Chilly weather could be contributing to the state's 'widespread' flu epidemic

Myth: There's no point in getting a flu shot if it's later in the flu season.
. The effectiveness of the vaccine varies each season as the strain of the virus adapts and adjusts to its environment, but generally the vaccine is about 40 to 60 percent effective in protecting the population from the flu.

The flu was a holiday gift for many this year. But there are hundreds of thousands of hospitalizations and tens of thousands of deaths due to the flu in any given year, according to the CDC.

Flu shots designed for babies and toddlers are expected to be available this week.

Pennsylvania is now labeled as widespread by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which means there are flu outbreaks in at least half of the regions in the state.

Also, washing your hands with soap and water or using hand sanitizer, may help to avoid the flu.

It's also wise to not attempt to self-diagnose - "Unless a doctor told you that you have the flu, you can not jump to that conclusion". I'll take this opportunity to debunk some of the most common misconceptions about the flu vaccine. While a flu shot can sometimes produce minor side effects, like headache or low-grade fever, the vaccine contains inactive flu viruses that cannot cause illness.

Wind chill advisory issued ahead of bitterly cold temperatures this week
There's a 60 percent chance of precipitation, with new snow accumulation of around an inch possible. Light snow is possible in southern in due to a disturbance moving through.

Aside from the vaccine, it always is a good idea to wash hands frequently, cover coughs and stay away from anyone who might be sick during flu season.

"There are currently flu cases on the island, so protect yourself and your family now".

Increased flu activity began earlier this season than usual in Kentucky.

Fact: Getting the flu shot, even later in the season, can still be beneficial. It is important for those with weaker immune systems, pregnant women, patients with chronic conditions and young children to all receive the vaccination and protect themselves from powerful influenza strains.

Flu experts at the CDC say its too early to know when flu season will peak in the United States and how severe it will be. But receiving a vaccine also prevents the spread of germs to other people, keeping the virus out of the workplace completely. "That generally differentiates from a flu to a cold".

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