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Flu tips: How to protect yourself and others, identify symptoms and more - The Mercury News

January 14, 2018


This article was originally published on this site

What is the flu?
Flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by flu viruses. Its symptoms may be similar to those of the common cold, but are usually more severe.

Do I need a flu shot?
It’s not too late to get vaccinated and health experts say those who haven’t gotten a shot should. While the vaccine hasn’t been as effective against the H3N2 strain sickening so many this year, the experts say getting a shot can reduce the duration or severity of the illness. They urge everyone six months and older to get vaccinated every year, but say it’s especially important now for pregnant women, children younger than 5, adults 65 and older, and those with chronic medical conditions such as heart disease, asthma and diabetes.

What the the symptoms?
Symptoms of the flu include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches and fatigue.

What can I do to reduce my flu risk and the spread of the virus?
To protect you and others from the flu, public health officials advise that you:

  • Cover your cough and sneezes with a tissue.
  • If you do not have a tissue, cough into your elbow.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
  • Wash your hands often and thoroughly with soap and warm water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Stay home when you are sick, and keep your children home when they are sick.
  • Stay home until you have been symptom-free for 24 hours.​

Source: Santa Clara County Public Health Department

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