Written by Dr. Perry Pong
Let’s beat the flu to the punch this season.
There is nothing good about the flu. Avoid the cough, runny nose, chills, headache and fatigue, and get a simple shot. Peak flu season is upon us—which starts at about December and lasts until February. Now is the time to get the vaccine. If that isn’t enough reason to get a flu shot, here are five more.
- To stay healthy. People who get the flu shot are less likely to get sick and miss time from work or school. Even if you do get sick, with the shot you may have a milder illness.
- Keep your family healthy. Getting the flu shot will prevent you from spreading it to your family. This is especially important if you live with anyone over 65, pregnant women, young children, or anyone who has a weak immune system. And while we are talking about your family, make sure your kids get the flu shot, too! Children over the age of can get nasal vaccine and avoid the needle.
- It is contagious. In the winter time, it is easy to catch the flu by touching an infected door knob, subway pole, somebody’s hand and then touching your own nose or mouth. So protect yourself by getting the vaccine.
- The flu changes. Since the flu virus can change every year, so does the vaccine. That flu shot you got last year will not protect you this year.
- It’s cheap. All insurances cover the flu shot. If you do not have insurance, the Health Center only charges $15. Or come to one of our flu shot open houses and get a FREE flu shot.
The vaccine is recommended for everyone aged six months or older. It is especially important for people over the age of 50, children ages six months to 18 years, pregnant women, health care workers, and people working or living with the elderly or young children.
It is better to get the flu shot than the flu, so make sure to get a flu shot at your next doctor’s appointment. You may also qualify for a free flu shot at one of our flu shot open houses. For open house dates and to see if you qualify, click here.
Written by Perry Pong, MD. Dr. Pong is the chief medical officer at the Charles B. Wang Community Health Center. He received his medical degree from the University of California San Diego School of Medicine, and completed his residency training at Veterans Affairs Medical Center New York. Dr. Pong is board-certified in internal medicine.