HOW TO PREVENT FLU

Take Three Actions to Prevent Flu Every Year

  1. Take time to get the flu vaccine. The single best way to prevent flu is to get vaccinated every year.
    • Everyone aged 6 months and older, without contraindications, is recommended to get an annual flu vaccine by the end of October.
    • Some young children aged 6 months through 8 years will need two doses of flu vaccine to be fully protected. Find out more
    • Every year, flu vaccines prevent millions of illnesses and thousands of hospitalizations and deaths. They reduce the burden on the health care system and conserve medical resources, which during the 2020-2021 flu season and COVID-19 pandemic, will be more important than ever.
    • Vaccination of people at high risk for flu complications is especially important to lower their risk of severe flu illness and death. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/highrisk/index.htm
    • It is essential that health care workers and those who work or live with people at higher risk are vaccinated.
       
  2. Take every day preventative actions to stop the spread of germs.
    • Avoiding close contact with other people who are sick and stay home when you are sick.
    • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing.
    • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water is not available, use alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.
    • Practice other good health habits including getting plenty of sleep, clean and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces, drinking plenty of fluids, and eating nutritious foods.
       
  3. Take flu antiviral drugs if your doctor prescribes them.
    • Antiviral drugs can be used to treat your illness, if you get the flu.
    • Antiviral drugs can make flu illness milder and shorten the time you are sick.
    • Higher risk individuals should contact their health care provider as soon as flu symptoms develop to be treated with antivirals.

To find out more about antiviral medications to treat seasonal flu, please visit https://www.cdc.gov/flu/treatment/index.html