FLUKENTUCKY (2/15/14) — Spending significant time in close proximity to others indoors can make people more susceptible to the flu. As a result, winter, when people typically spend more time indoors than outdoors, is often dominated by the sniffling and sneezing synonymous with the flu. But men and women can take steps to protect themselves from the flu this season.

  •  Get a flu shot. Some people prefer to avoid getting a flu shot because they want to build up their natural immunities or they believe the shots can make them sick. But most flu shots contain an inactive virus that will not make you sick, and will only trigger your body's immune system response to a foreign invader. It can take a couple of weeks for full immunity to develop, so it's possible to still get sick even after a flu shot has been administered. Also, a flu shot does not guarantee recipients won't get the flu. People can still get the flu after receiving a flu shot, as it may be another strain of the virus. But flu shots are largely effective.

  •  Quit smoking. Smoking cigarettes and cigars can affect the immune system and also compromise the body in a number of different ways. Smoking can disable mechanisms in your breathing passageways that serve as natural repellants to the flu. These include the hairs on the lungs that brush away contaminants. Smoking also can create holes in the lining of lower air passages, and such holes can make people more susceptible to illness, including the flu. Smokers who get the flu typically find that the flu further complicates their ability to breathe.

  •  Avoid sick people. When those around you are sick, it is best to keep your distance, especially when those people have the flu. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention state that people with the flu can spread it to others up to six feet away. Flu viruses are spread mainly by droplets of bodily fluids expelled during coughing, sneezing and even talking. This is why doctors recommend that anyone who has the flu stay home from work or school until they are fully recovered.

  •  Be especially cautious when pregnant. According to Dr. Cameron Wolfe, an infectious disease specialist at Duke University Medical Center, women who are pregnant are at a higher risk of complications and even death from influenza. Doctors don't fully understand why, but many feel that because the flu can compromise a woman's ability to breathe well, this makes it difficult for oxygen to be passed on to the fetus. Pregnant women should speak with their obstetricians about the safety of the flu shot.

  •  Get plenty of rest and good food. Adequate sleep and a healthy diet can bolster your immune system. It's important to stay hydrated, eat fruits and vegetables rich in vitamin C and prioritize getting a good night's sleep each night.

  •  Beware of homeopathic remedies. Always check with a doctor before adding any natural remedies to your flu-fighting repertoire. While some supplements like elderberry syrup, zinc and oscillococcinum can mitigate symptoms of the flu, there's no solid evidence that these items offer any preventative value. Homeopathic remedies also can interfere with medications or may be dangerous to a developing fetus, so do not take these substances without first checking with a doctor.

SurfKY News

e-max.it: your social media marketing partner

LIKE SurfKY on Facebook - Click here to LIKE us now.

© Copyright 2015 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story on social media.

1 DOW 16,790.19
+13.76 (0.08%)    
2 S&P 1,979.92
-7.13 (-0.36%)    
3 NASDAQ 4,748.36
-32.90 (-0.69%)    

Stock Report Sponsored by

In Other News...

Owensboro Board of Education Luncheon Oct. 8

OWENSBORO, Ky. (10/6/15) — The Owensboro Board of Education will hold a board luncheon at 11 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 8, at… Read More

Fall Break Schedule For Dugan Best Recreation Center

OWENSBORO, Ky. (10/6/15) — During Fall Break, Oct. 12-17, Dugan Best Recreation Center will be open from noon until 8… Read More

Most Read This Week

October 01, 2015 7562

UPDATE: Madisonville Woman Charged after Bank…

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News
September 30, 2015 4865

Four Arrested After Allegedly Exposing Children…

by SurfKY News
October 01, 2015 3664

Clay Man Charged with Burglaries; Two Charged…

by SurfKY News
October 05, 2015 3642

Four Charged with Drug Offenses after Motel…

by SurfKY News
October 02, 2015 2978

Mahr Park Project Manager Describes Present,…

by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News

Most Read This Month

September 16, 2015 12752

Mining Accident Fatality - Update

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News
September 30, 2015 10858

Dawson Woman Dead After Princeton Factory…

by SurfKY News

Stories Trending Now

October 06, 2015 2574

County Passes Occupational Tax Ordinance

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News
October 06, 2015 1976

Dawson Man Charged with Cultivating Marijuana,…

by SurfKY News
October 06, 2015 1303

Traffic Stop Leads to Drug Charge for Earlington…

by SurfKY News
October 06, 2015 762

Search Warrant Leads to Discovery of Indoor Grow…

by SurfKY News
October 06, 2015 616

Madisonville Police Arrest Reports Released -…

by SurfKY News
October 06, 2015 439

KSP Seeks Wanted Person

by SurfKY News
October 06, 2015 432

Hopkins County Sheriff's Reports Released

by SurfKY News
October 06, 2015 405

Gov. Beshear Proclaims October - Cyber Security…

by SurfKY News
October 06, 2015 389

OPD Search For Missing Boy

by SurfKY News
October 06, 2015 385

KSP Arrest Reports Released

by SurfKY News