Influenza cases spreading in Tulare County

 

Has influenza found its way to your house yet? If not, be careful because it’s lurking right outside the front door, waiting for a crack in your family’s immune-system armor.

The Tulare County Health and Human Services Agency reports that flu numbers are increasing and is strongly encouraging residents to get vaccinated.

In addition, the H1N1 strain, the pandemic influenza strain, has been detected, the HHSA said. This influenza strain is a component of the current seasonal flu vaccine, so vaccination is being recommended for everyone over six months of age and especially anyone with high-risk health conditions.

For information about flu shot clinics, call 685-5725.

To reduce the spread of germs, everyone can take daily preventive steps like staying away from sick people and washing their hands. If sick with flu, stay home from work or school to prevent spreading influenza to others.

Even though the flu is now circulating, vaccination is still an effective deterrent to catching the flu. It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop in the body that provide protection against the flu.

Flu symptoms are similar to cold symptoms, but there is one clue about flu that can help you know. When you have the flu, you feel symptoms sooner than you would cold symptoms, and they come on with much greater intensity.

With the flu, you may feel weak and fatigued for up to three weeks. You’ll have muscle aches and periods of chills and sweats as fever comes and goes. You may also have a stuffy or runny nose, headache, and sore throat.

Flu activity most commonly peaks in the U.S. in January or February. However, seasonal flu activity can begin as early as October and continue through May.

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