Tips to avoid the flu - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Tips to avoid the flu

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WILLIAMSON CO. -- As the flu rapidly spreads across the country, doctors and medical experts urge you to do your part to stay healthy.

The CDC reports widespread flu activity in 46 states, including Illinois, Kentucky and Missouri. 

Hospitals and clinics are also seeing upper respiratory infections in general, with cases of bronchitis and sinus infections. Regardless of what it may be, medical experts have some tips for us to keep in mind this season.

"The flu can turn into something more serious than the virus. It can turn into pneumonia or anything like that and sometimes people are even hospitalized," said Jayna Spivey, a physician assistant at Simca Internal Medicine.

Spivey said you can do little things, like eating healthy, working out, and using antivirals like Tamiflu to help prevent the flu, if necessary. 

Some hospitals are even taking steps to prevent the spread of the flu virus within their own doors by limiting visitors and offering face masks issued by the Illinois Department of Public Health.

 "Try to avoid hospital settings and things like that if you don't need to be there, washing your hands often, just good hand hygiene," Spivey said.

The CDC recommends a flu shot for everyone over the age of 6 months, with some exceptions

"A lot of people get them earlier on in the fall but it's not too late. A lot of pharmacies and clinics still have the flu vaccine," Spivey said. "They're not 100 percent, but it helps prevent it and sometimes can even lessen the severity."

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