Last week, when the state reported its first confirmed flu cases, local health officials are advising residents of the district to get their flu vaccine as soon as possible.
Two laboratory-confirmed seasonal flu cases were diagnosed in an adult child in the Central and Eastern Shore regions, the Maryland Department of Health announced October 16. The flu strains for the two confirmed cases are Type A (H1) and Type B (Victoria).
Flu, short for influenza, is an infectious respiratory disease that costs the country billions of dollars of lost productivity and adverse healthcare costs each year. In addition to fever, body aches, tiredness, cough and sore throat, the flu can lead to complications and even death.
As the circulating influenza viruses change from year to year, it is recommended that they be vaccinated annually. And the best time to do it is now.
The flu season mostly lasts from the beginning of October to the end of April. Nationwide, a flu-related death has been reported in Florida.
A Florida-born child who did not have an influenza vaccine had a recent death, Florida health workers said. The child's death was the first influenza flu death reported in the flu season.
"It's a real disease, it's a real risk," Dr. Meena Brewster of St. Mary's County Health Officer last week.
Brewster said it was too early to explain the trend this year, but this flu season has already started early, influenza cases were diagnosed long before the confirmed cases were reported by the state this week.
"Just like last year, we expect this to be a strong flu season," she said.
Last school year, St. Mary's public In schools, the number of students who were absent from school due to the flu increased tenfold.
Nationwide, the last flu season was classified by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as a "severe season" in which 1
"One is too much," said Melanie Gardiner, director of the Health Nursing Program at the Charles County Department of Health, last week. "Absolutely vaccinated, everyone must be vaccinated so that we can prevent flu in the community."
While the success rate of flu vaccines varies from year to year, health experts emphasize that this is the best protection against a potentially fatal disease.
Calvert Health Larry Polsky said over the phone last week that people still have the flu after vaccination, but the symptoms are probably less severe and treatment shorter.
Because influenza is a very contagious disease, Polsky said vaccinated not only protects one's own health, but also reduces the chance of passing it on to others, especially to weaker people with weakened immune systems.
Unlike the previous two years, CDC recommends a nasal spray called FluMist for women who are not pregnant and those who are between 2 and 49 years old. People with some illnesses should not receive the nasal spray flu vaccine.
However, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends all legitimate children to receive a traditional flu shot as a first choice and to reserve the nasal spray for children who reject the shot. I agree to get the spray.
"We will not choose between two groups of experts," said Polsky. "For anyone who finds the fog, talk to their family doctor to see if it's a good choice."
Other preventive measures include hand washing, especially after coughing, sneezing, blowing or wiping the nose, and covering the mouth when coughing or sneezing.
Residents can get flu vaccines in their GP's office, some local pharmacies, and their local health department.