Physicians say that October is the perfect time to start talking about flu immunizations and vaccinations. After all, it's the perfect time to get your flu shot in order to minimize the risk of contracting the virus.
Doctors tell NewsRadio 610 WIOD that it takes approximately two weeks for the flu vaccine to encourage the body to build up antibodies against the virus. "Get the vaccine in October so that you will be prepared to handle any potential exposures," says Paolo Coll, a leading physician at Memorial Urgent Care Center.
This year especially, health officials are seeing an increased number of symptoms early on in the flu season at the Urgent Care Center on Sheridan Street in Pembroke Pines as well as within the emergency rooms.
Dr. Coll says now is a better time than ever to get your flu shot.
This year, vaccines include four different strains of two types of the influenza virus -- A and B. Dr. Coll says this year's flu vaccine formula aims to protect the body against four different particular strains of the virus.
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), influenza is a contagious respiratory illness caused by flu viruses. It can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. Flu is different from a cold. Flu usually comes on suddenly.
People who are sick with flu often feel some or all of these symptoms:
- Fever* or feeling feverish/chills
- Sore throat
- Runny or stuffy nose
- Muscle or body aches
- Fatigue (tiredness)
- Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults.
*It’s important to note that not everyone with flu will have a fever.
If these symptoms seem to hit you like a ton of bricks, Dr. Coll strongly suggests making an appointment with your primary care physician as soon as possible.
To find the location nearest you approved by the Florida Department of Health to get a flu shot, click here.