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Flu Season Preparedness: Your Guide to Flu Vaccines

Several disposable syringes arranged in a geometric pattern rest on top of a light blue background.

As seasons change and the year transitions into fall, flu season rears its head. Although the flu is known for its ability to spread widely and infect large numbers of people, flu vaccines at Kines Family Pharmacy can limit its effects. Flu vaccines are one of the most effective ways to protect yourself and your community from illness. With one shot, you can help slow the spread of influenza and avoid the inconvenience and discomfort of getting sick.

In this article, we'll cover the details of flu vaccines, exploring how they play a vital role in safeguarding our health and the well-being of our communities.

A view of a bedside table with a tissue box, pill bottle, nasal spray, and thermometer. A bed is visible in the background.

What Is the Flu, and What Risk Does it Pose?

The flu, short for influenza, is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses. Some people dismiss it as a severe cold, but it’s important to remember the distinction between a flu and a cold. For many people, the flu will simply manifest as a few days of illness, but there’s the possibility of serious complications for others. Small children, seniors, and people with chronic health conditions are vulnerable to symptoms that could require hospitalization, including:

  • Pneumonia

  • Shortness of breath

  • Severe vomiting

  • Dehydration

Flu Vaccines in ​​Lubbock, TX

Flu vaccines immunize people against the influenza virus. Researchers track the most widely circulating flu strains yearly and develop vaccines that respond to those viruses. These vaccines encourage the immune system to produce antibodies that can fight off the virus, ensuring a rapid response if someone gets exposed to the flu virus. Vaccination reduces the risk of infection and severe symptoms if someone gets infected.

Medication Management During Flu Season

When flu season arrives, maintaining your health becomes more important than ever. Beyond protecting yourself with a vaccine, you will also want to keep up a consistent medication regimen. Medication synchronization can simplify your routine by allowing you to pick up all your medication on the same day. Medication adherence programs make remembering which pills to take easier by providing packaging that helps you track your daily medication. Whether you need to pick up prescriptions or pick up a bottle of cough medicine, your local pharmacy can help you take a proactive approach to your health.

Who Should Get Vaccinated?

Chances are, you’ve seen posters and flyers about getting the latest flu vaccine at your local pharmacy and other health centers. It’s important to remember that getting a flu shot has results that go beyond your own personal health– it’s an essential part of keeping the entire community safe. Vulnerable groups that should prioritize vaccination include:

  • Pregnant women

  • People over the age of 65

  • Young children

  • People with asthma, heart disease, or diabetes

  • Healthcare professionals

Increasing the number of vaccinated people in the community makes it easier to reduce the spread of the flu and other illnesses.

A syringe rests on a light blue surface next to two glass bottles filled with liquid.

When Should You Get Vaccinated?

Before flu season starts, you may notice increased opportunities to get your vaccination. The best time to get your shot is right before flu season or early on, which gives your immune system more time to build up protection before flu cases peak. It takes a few weeks for your system to develop enough antibodies. However, even if you don’t get vaccinated right at the start of September, it is still worth getting your flu shot since flu season lasts for months.

Using Over-the-Counter Medications to Boost Your Flu Immunity

To decrease your chances of getting sick, you may want to use over-the-counter options, including immune-boosting supplements. While they don’t have the same effectiveness as a vaccine, some vitamins and minerals can support your immune system. Vitamin C, Vitamin D, and zinc have immune-boosting properties and are available in multivitamins or as stand-alone supplements. They can help people get over colds and the flu more quickly. Before using supplements, consult your doctor about how best to use them for your unique medical needs.

Schedule Your Flu Shot Today

As the weather cools down, the threat of the flu becomes more relevant again. Immunization is a powerful tool that can strengthen your body’s defenses and help you protect those around you. When you sign up for a flu shot, you are participating in the collective effort to keep your community healthy through fall and winter. Take action today and strengthen your immune system by scheduling a flu vaccination at your local pharmacy.

For more information on health and how to make the most of your pharmacy in Lubbock, TX, take a look at the Kitch Pharmacy blog!

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