Ahh, ahh, achoo!  Many diseases come with the coldness of the winter; with the most popular being the flu.  What can we do to protect ourselves from these viruses?

According to www.yourhealth.net, the best way to avoid getting sick in the winter is with a flu shot, a healthy lifestyle and good personal hygiene.  People get sick with a cold or the flu by either respiratory droplets from coughs and sneezes or touching contaminated surfaces.

“An annual flu vaccination is the most effective protection against influenza.  It is best given in autumn but can still be given in June and July,” -www.yourhealth.com

Along with getting a flu shot, boosting your immune system also helps to prevent you from getting sick. You can boost your immune system by eating a healthy diet, reducing stress, not smoking and getting plenty of sleep and exercise.

Each year, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) studies how well the influenza vaccine protects against the flu illness.  Research shows the flu vaccination reduces the risk of influenza by between 40% and 60%.

The flu season is unpredictable each year.  The flu virus still spreads each year but scientists are not able to predict the timing, severity or length of the season since it changes each year.  This is why it is recommended to get the flu vaccine each year.

Since 2010, the CDC estimates there are between 140,000 and 960,000 hospitalizations each year due to the flu.  The flu has caused more deaths each year.  During 2011-2012, there was an estimated 12,000 adults to pass from the flu. That number has risen to 79,000 adult deaths during 2017-2018.

Remember to get your flu vaccine before each flu season, wash your hands, eat a healthy diet, reduce stress, do not smoke and get plenty of sleep and exercise in order to protect yourself from the flu.

To find out more information about the flu and how to prevent getting sick this winter, visit these websites:

https://www.yourhealth.net.au/articles/seasonal/colds-flu/how-to-avoid-getting-sick-this-winter/.

https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/season/flu-season-2018-2019.htm.