Due to a recent increase in flu activity, the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) and the Logan County Health Department are urging everybody older than 6 months to get flu shots. Thus, they will not only protect themselves, but also those around them, such as babies that are too young to receive a shot.
In Oklahoma, studies show that flu starts spreading in October, but it reaches its peak in January and February and may even linger until mid-May. This is why the Oklahoma health officials warn everybody that the flu season is not over and they are still in danger. The best preventive means is to get a flu vaccination.
Since 2009, Oklahoma records a high number of children under five that annually get hospitalized for influenza. The recorded number is bigger than the average national number. This number ranged from 67 to 337 children younger than five hospitalized during one single flu season. During the same season, they have registered 23 deaths associated with the flu among children aged from 6 months to 17 years. The majority of them had not received a flu shot.
Young children in general are predisposed to develop complications after contracting influenza, but children with asthma, other respiratory or neuromuscular disorders, or illnesses that affect the immune system are at a higher risk. Again, the authorities emphasize the importance of the vaccine.
Despite the intense promotion of the benefits of the flu shot, many people have reported not receiving a flu shot. It can still be found in pharmacies, health care providers, or health departments. Also, in order to combat the flu, people should keep in mind some important tips they are advised to follow.
People should constantly wash their hands with soap and water and also use alcohol-based products, like cleansing gels, even when the hands are not visibly dirty. They should use tissues to cover their coughs and sneezes and then throw the tissues away and wash their hands. When they do not have any tissues available, they should use their sleeves to cover their coughs and never their hands.
If you register flu symptoms, stay at home for at least 24 hours and see how your condition develops. If you see no improvement, go see a doctor and use the prescribed anti-flu medication. Also, do not forget to get plenty of rest and eat healthy food.
Do not forget the importance of flu shots during the cold season and take care of yourself and the people around you. Stay healthy in your conquest with the cruel winter.
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