Getting your flu shot is one of the most important steps you can take in staying well this winter. Everyone 6 months of age and older should get a yearly flu vaccine. Getting a flu shot is of particular importance for those who are at higher risk of developing flu-related complications–including those with diabetes.
The flu is easily spread by coughing, sneezing and nasal secretions. Symptoms of infection last a few days and include:
- Sore throat
- Muscle ache
- Runny/stuffy nose
Children, pregnant women, those who are 65 years of age or older, or those with weakened immune systems can get much sicker and may suffer from high fever and pneumonia if they are infected with the flu. Each year, thousands of people die from influenza or require hospitalization. It’s nothing to take lightly!
Flu season begins in October and can last through May, so now is the time to get your flu shot. Flu shots are offered conveniently at many locations, and may include your doctor’s office, walk-in clinics and your local health department. Check with your employer too. Many employers offer flu shots to employees free of charge. That’s definitely a benefit to take advantage of!
Flu shots are also available this year at all four of St. Anthony’s Urgent Care Centers for $25-$30. Click here for more information. Check the St. Anthony’s homepage for a coupon to receive a mini first aid kit when you get your flu shot!
Here’s something else to consider: If you have never had a pneumococcal vaccine (pneumonia shot), you may also want to consider getting this preventative shot. Pneumonia is a serious illness for anyone, but people with diabetes are three times more likely to die with flu and pneumonia. The CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention) recommends that people with diabetes be vaccinated against pneumonia once in their lifetime. Ask your doctor if you should consider this vaccine too, and when you should get it. For more information, click here.