How to prevent getting the flu

Macey Hein, Staff Writer

Flu season is here. As of October, an estimated 2.9 million to 3.5 million people have gone to the doctor because of the flu.  This virus is highly contagious and can be prevented by performing some simple tasks.

“The most common signs of the flu are body aching, high fever, congestion, sore throat and body apathy,” Nurse Britny Stricker said.

More students have been sent home with the flu in the Elementary and Intermediate schools than the High School. There are still steps that can be taken to try to prevent getting sick.

“Washing yours hands is key,” Nurse Stricker said. “The flu virus does not stay on surfaces for very long. It is most commonly spread by coughing, sneezing and through touch. So when you do cough, cover your mouth with your elbow. Do not cough into your hand.”

The flu shot is also an option as a virus prevention. There are three brands of trivalent influenza vaccines which are formulated annually, based on influenza strains projected to be prevalent in the upcoming flu season and seven brands of quadrivalent vaccines.

“I have had the flu one time, and I take flu shots annually,” sophomore Lacey Shook said. “I think the shot really helps prevent me from getting sick.”

During the first three days after getting the flu is when one is most contagious to others.  The more one coughs and sneezes, the more flu germs they spread into the air.

“All of the prevention options will really help protect you from the flu,” Nurse Stricker said. “Remember to wash your hands, cough into your elbow and be cautious around others.”