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Health Minute: Flu & Covid

By: Claude

It’s that time of year again as we start to gear up for flu and cold season. This year, like the past two years, we also need to consider COVID-19. Experts are expecting a rise in cases this Winter and Avni Jain, MD, a family medicine physician with Adventist HealthCare Adventist Medical Group gives us some tips on how to prepare for any illness this season.

When is the best time to get my flu shot?

Getting a flu shot each year is the best way to protect yourself from the flu. It’s recommended that everyone six months and older receives a flu shot between September and October to protect you during peak season. You should still get a flu shot even after October to protect yourself.

Is it time to get my COVID-19 booster?

People should plan to get an updated COVID-19 booster if they are 12 years and older and have received all primary series doses and one or more original boosters. Children between the ages of five and 11 are encouraged to get the original booster. Children between six months and four years of age should only receive the COVID-19 primary series doses at this time.

How can I tell if I have a cold, the flu or COVID-19?

The flu, COVID-19 and common cold all have similar symptoms. It’s important to remember that if you are experiencing symptoms of any of these illnesses, to stay home until you are feeling better. COVID-19 symptoms can appear anywhere from two to 14 days after exposure while symptoms of a cold can appear two to three days after exposure and flu symptoms can appear one to four days after exposure. If you think you are sick, stay home, rest, isolate from others in your home and test yourself for COVID19.

What are some best practices someone can take to stay healthy this season?

While we can’t always avoid becoming sick, we can take precautions to help us keep from getting sick. These include, getting your flu shot, COVID booster, staying home when you’re sick to keep from infecting others, washing your hands, keeping distance from others who are sick, avoiding touching your face, wiping down frequently touched surfaces in your home, getting enough sleep, staying active, drinking fluids and eating healthy.

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