How to protect yourself from the flu?
With the onset of cold weather, people begin to massively sick with ARVI.Already in the beginning of autumn on the television, pharmaceutical companies are beginning to actively promote the medicine for colds.Should I succumb to panic and leave half-payments in the pharmacy?Or are there more accessible and effective measures for preventing ARVI, in particular influenza?Table of contents:
Vaccination against influenza
WHO calls vaccination the most effective method of preventing influenza. To vaccinate physicians recommend before the start of the flu season, that is, approximately in September-October .Immunity will be formed within three to four weeks after vaccination.However, according to modern medical data, if a person does not have time to vaccinate on time, he can do it in the midst of the flu.
The composition of the influenza vaccine varies every year.It necessarily includes three strains of the influenza virus .The strains of the virus are not selected at random, but as a result of year-round surveillance of the circulation of the virus throughout the globe.Based on this, scientists predict which strains will be distributed soon in the Northern or Southern Hemisphere.
- A /California/7/ 2009;
- A / Hong Kong /4801/ 2014;
- B /Brisbane/60/ 2008.
Accordingly, influenza vaccines for the 2016-2017 season contain the aforementioned strains of the virus.There are different vaccine manufacturers.You can be vaccinated with any vaccine that has been registered in your state.
Read more about flu vaccination here.
Who needs to make a flu vaccine?
Influenza vaccination is not included in the list of mandatory vaccines, so each person decides independently whether to do it.But there are certain categories of people that doctors strongly recommend to be vaccinated against the flu. This group of people includes:
- of the Elderly;
- Children under five;
- People with existing diseases of cardiovascular and respiratory systems, diabetes mellitus;
- People undergoing immunosuppressive treatment.
In addition, there are professional risk groups.This category includes medical workers, educators, educators, public transport drivers, sellers of .Contacting daily with a large number of people at the height of the flu, these workers also run the risk of getting sick.
What is the benefit of vaccination?Vaccination prevents the infection itself, as well as its complications.
You can often hear people's indignation that they have made a flu vaccine, but still sick.First, it is clinically difficult to distinguish influenza from other ARVI.Therefore it is impossible to say that the person was sick with the flu.And secondly, , despite the vaccination, the probability of infection with the flu is still present, but the infection is easier for the person and complications do not arise.
Methods for nonspecific prevention of influenza
Influenza is a serious infectious disease, leading to serious complications and even death.How here not to succumb to panic?From the TV screens we are actively offered all kinds of medications for colds, will they help in prevention?
In fact, the flu is a typical infection, transmitted by airborne droplets.That is, the patient secretes particles of the virus into the external environment when sneezing, coughing.And the other person gets sick after getting these particles on the mucosa of the upper respiratory tract.Knowing the mechanism of disease transmission, it is already becoming clear how to avoid infection. Recommendations for the prevention of influenza are absolutely simple:
- Avoid crowding people.During the influenza season, it is worth minimizing stay in public places, and visiting concerts and cinemas to postpone until better times.If possible - it is much better to walk a couple of stops on foot than to go by public transport.Walking in the fresh air will protect against the flu and in general will have a general strengthening effect on the body.
- Regularly ventilate the room, conduct a wet cleaning.The flu virus is very comfortable with dry and warm indoor air.
- Fully eat and sleep well.Compliance with these recommendations increases the body's ability to resist infections.
- Wash your hands.On the surfaces of handrails in transport and other public goods may be particles of the virus.If a person after touching them rubs their hands with his mouth, nose - the probability of infection with the flu is high.Start a habit of carrying an alcoholic antiseptic, because you can not always wash your hands.
- Use a gauze dressing if you are in contact with a person who has ARVI.Remember that the mask needs to be changed every three to four hours.
Regarding the use of medicines, physicians do not recommend such a method of prevention.Many of the drugs advertised are homeopathic remedies, that is, they have no clinically proven effectiveness.In fact, they can be compared with a placebo, money is spent, and there is no tangible result .
With regard to antiviral and immunomodulating agents, it should be noted that they must be used only on the prescription of a doctor, because they have a number of contraindications.The need to use such medicines arises already in the treatment of influenza.
To avoid the flu, it is enough to follow the simple above recommendations.Eat well, avoid crowding people, walk more often outdoors and then no cold threatens you!
Grigorova Valeria, medical reviewer