Trying to Avoid the Flu -- And Flu Shots
Health officials say this flu season is off to one of its fastest starts ever.
You see the commercials as soon as Christmas is over and the new year kicks in.
They're right up there with any advertisement talking about taxes.
We're not just talking about the common cold; we're talking about flu season. And this one apparently is off to one of the worst starts ever for this dreaded illness that seems to haunt everyone once January arrives.
On Thursday night, the flu led off one evening newscast. Health officials certainly put the scare in everybody, saying that influenza is storming the states, sending people off running to the doctor or out to the pharmacy.
It seems like someone we know is coughing or sneezing these days.
When you think about it, the flu season is a major industry.
Think about all of the money made from doctor visits, cough drops and syrup, tissues, over-the-counter medicine, orange juice, ginger ale, crackers, soup, etc., etc.
And then there are the flu shots.
Everyone is advising to get one. Everyone is also offering them.
Pass any pharmacy in Forks and Palmer townships or throughout the Lehigh Valley and you see the signs telling you that flu shots are available.
Even my boss advised us to get one.
Ah, but I'm great at avoidance.
For my 46 years, I've not only avoided getting the flu but also ever getting a flu shot. (I'm probably putting a curse on myself right now.)
At this stage, why break tradition or fix what ain't broke?
My wife and I talk every year about getting a flu shot. We talked about it again on Thursday night.
A few months ago, I even covered a health seminar and told a nurse giving out flu shots that I'd never ever gotten one in my entire life. She practically was ready to throw me in a chair and stick a needle into my arm.
You always hear the myths that if you get a flu shot, you get a flu.
Health officials continue to state that it isn't true. But, from what I recently heard, a flu shot only protects you 60 percent from getting the flu.
Those aren't such wonderful statistics.
Trust me, I'm not the model of health. I have some allergy issues and will usually spend part of the day either coughing, sneezing or blowing my nose.
But knock on wood, no flu.
So I'm probably going to roll the dice again. Like I'm one of the "Last of the Mohicans" or in that "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" movie.
It won't get me. I can beat it.
You never know how long your odds will last. But, hopefully, if you're like me, you're doing everything you can to avoid getting sick this winter.
Stay healthy my friends!