Making ready for the 2021 Flu Season

This flu season, it is crucial as ever to guard ourselves and our family members towards each the flu and COVID-19. We spoke to 2 Dignity Well being Medical Group physicians who shared what it’s best to know this flu season.

COVID-19 and the Flu

It’s attainable to contract each COVID-19 and the flu concurrently, nonetheless receiving the flu shot decreases the probability of getting these viruses collectively and reduces your probability of getting the flu altogether. 

With flu season sometimes lasting from October to Could, the CDC recommends getting your flu shot between late September and late October because it takes about two weeks for immunity to kind in your physique. Nevertheless, it’s by no means too late to get the flu shot. Notice that if in case you have been uncovered to, or are recovering from COVID-19, you shouldn’t get the flu vaccine till your quarantine interval is over.

Binita Mandal, MD, an immunologist with Dignity Well being Mercy Medical Group, explains that the seasonal flu and COVID-19 produce comparable signs, together with fever, chills, cough, congestion, shortness of breath, fatigue, headache, muscle and physique aches, nausea and sore throat. 

COVID-19 signs might embrace lack of odor and style — which is much less frequent with the flu. It’s best to contemplate getting examined for each if in case you have any of those signs, in addition to comply with quarantine protocol to assist hold others secure.

Children and the Flu Shot

Dr. Kono-1Danton Kono, MD, a pediatrician with Dignity Well being Mercy Medical Group in Citrus Heights, shares that though many vaccines are solely administered as soon as in your adolescence, the CDC recommends a yearly seasonal influenza (flu) vaccine for everybody six months and older, together with pregnant girls. Kids six months to eight years outdated who’re receiving the flu shot for the primary time, will want two doses of the vaccine 4 weeks aside to be protected, so they need to begin the method early within the season.


One of the crucial frequent misunderstandings in regards to the flu shot is that it causes you to contract the flu. Dr. Mandal explains that you simply can’t get the flu from the flu vaccine. When you’ve got signs akin to muscle aches, a sore arm or a low-grade fever after you obtain the shot, it’s probably your immune response to the vaccine and never the flu. 

It is very important know {that a} wholesome grownup who will get the flu might simply infect somebody extra weak. Excessive-risk populations and people with continual sicknesses have an elevated probability of growing critical issues from the flu, akin to pneumonia. 

Defending Your self and Liked Ones In opposition to the Flu

A flu shot is your greatest protection towards contracting and spreading the flu. The next further precautionary measures will help to cut back the unfold of the flu in addition to COVID-19:

  • Washing your fingers
  • Carrying a masks
  • Disinfecting frequent surfaces
  • Working towards bodily distancing
  • Staying house when feeling sick

When you’ve got flu signs, it’s best to contact your physician as quickly as attainable. You’ll be able to alleviate signs by hydrating and taking over-the-counter ache medicine akin to Tylenol and ibuprofen whenever you begin having signs. Taking Tamiflu inside 72 hours of symptom onset might shorten the period and severity of flu signs.


The extra folks obtain the flu vaccine, the simpler will probably be to cut back the unfold of the flu whereas we navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. The actions we take now to assist cease the unfold of the flu will hold our households and communities secure. Schedule your flu shot at present at your native Dignity Well being Medical Group clinic. 

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