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Flu Season Means Urgent Care Season!

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 Flu

season, flu season, flu season! Every year, we are inundated with messages reminding us to be cautious about flu season.

It is so easy to get overwhelmed by these messages and start tuning them out. Everyone knows people tend to get sick when the weather gets cold but, in South Texas, we stay happy and warm.

 That

means we don’t have to worry, right?

What is flu season?  Flu

season is the period of time when large numbers of people come down with the

flu.  Unlike

the traditional seasons, it is unpredictable in length since it is based on viruses, rather than weather. It also varies between countries.

 Generally

speaking, for the United States, flu season goes from October to May. It tends to be in full swing from December to February.

Who should get a flu shot?  Getting

a flu vaccine is strongly recommended by the CDC for everyone 6 months or

older. 

However, there are some “high risk” groups who should absolutely get the flu shot.

 These

individuals are the ones who, if not treated, could become the sickest and potentially die from the flu.

1. 2. 3.


Children ages 6 months to 4 years Anyone over 50 years old People who are immunosuppressed • Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) • Immunosuppression caused by medication People with chronic health problems like: • Chronic pulmonary disorders • Cardiovascular disorders except hypertension • Renal disorders

• • • • 6 7 8 9 10

Hepatic disorders Neurologic disorders Hematologic disorders Metabolic disorders Children age 6 to 18 who are on long-term aspirin therapy Women who are pregnant Women who may become pregnant during flu season Seniors in nursing homes American Indians & Alaska Natives

11 12 13 14 15

Anyone who is morbidly obese Healthcare personnel Caregivers for children under 5 years old Caregivers for seniors over 50 years old Caregivers of individuals with medical conditions that put them at risk for severe complications from flu exposure.

What is the difference between a cold and the flu? 1.



Body aches • Cold: Body aches are unusual with a cold, although not impossible. • Flu: Almost every case of the flu is accompanied by body aches. These aches can be very severe for some people. This is a good way to identify if what you are experiencing the flu, as opposed to a cold. Congestion, runny nose, sore throat, sneezing • Cold: Almost everyone with a cold ends up with some sort of nasal symptom. • Flu: It is not unheard for someone with the flu to have these symptoms. However, it is not a requirement of the flu. Exhaustion • Cold: Someone with a cold may be more tired than usual but it will not be severe. • Flu: Someone suffering from the flu will almost always experience extreme exhaustion

4 Fever • Cold: It is unusual, but not unheard of, for someone with a cold to experience a fever. • Flu: The flu almost always causes those infected to suffer a fever. 5 Headache • Cold: Sometimes a cold is accompanied by headache. • Flu: Flus are usually accompanied by headaches. 6 Location of symptoms • Cold: If you feel your symptoms above the neck, you likely have a cold. • Flu: If you feel your symptoms throughout your entire body, you likely have the flu. 7 Typical duration • Cold: A cold will last about a week. • Flu: The flu will last one to three weeks.

Should I visit a doctor?      

While you are still healthy and before flu season is in full swing, it is important to make the time for a quick flu shot. It’s easy to let this errand get away from you but, once you are infected with the virus, your options are much more limited. It is easier to prevent the flu from happening than it is to get rid of once it is here. Urgent care clinics fill the space between these two options. You can get in quickly for a shot or medication. There are also no shortage of urgent care clinics in San Antonio! Gonzaba Urgent Care, for instance, has three locations across the city.

Note – This article is originally appeared on -

Flu season means urgent care season!