Flu Season Starts Now!

September 22,2016

Does it seem like the flu season never goes away? That's because many people confuse symptoms of a viral cold with those related to influenza. Although you can catch a cold anytime of the year, you are the most likely to suffer a case of the flu between October and May. That's because cold air and lower humidity levels help flu viruses float in the air in tiny respiratory droplets. In warm humid air, those same droplets take on water and are no longer suspended. However, the timing of flu season is a bit tricky and the virus does tend to morph its way around the world.


In Jacksonville and Orange Park, the peak of flu activity typically falls between December and February. But, every flu season is different. So what's up for the 2016-2017 flu season? Well according to The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), FluMist nasal spray is not a recommended option, which has left many parents disappointed. With health experts saying the flu shot is the best option to vaccinate against the virus, parents need to forget about the Mist, at least this year. In addition, children between the age of 6 months to 9 years old will need two flu shots with the vaccinations schedule a month apart. Protection doesn't begin until a couple weeks after the second flu shot.


For most adults, one flu shot will do. However, many healthcare providers prefer that older patients (over 65 years of age) get a vaccine at the end of August or beginning of September. This helps to protect a growing population that is more susceptible to complications, such as pneumonia, following a bout with the flu. During bad or extended flu seasons, this can require a second shot in late winter for some elderly family members. The key component in assuring that you and your loved ones are fully protected is for everyone to get their flu shot. That way nobody spreads the dreaded bug.


To protect your whole family from this season's influenza, schedule an appointment at either PrimeMed location and get your flu shot now. Should you or anyone in your family develop flu-like symptoms, it is important to seek immediate medical attention. Testing an adult or child for infection is quick and easy. If flu symptoms are present, a healthcare professional will swab the throat or nose for lab analysis. The results are same day and those testing positive can be prescribed an antiviral medication. But, time is of the essence, so don't delay.