Your Pharmacist Can Help with Flu Questions
The Internet is a wonderful tool that can offer up information on absolutely everything. However, when it comes to health information, the Internet can be vague and sometimes misleading. The best way to get answers to your health questions is to consult a healthcare professional.
During flu season, it is important to know what’s ailing you, as what resembles the flu could actually be COVID-19 or just a common cold. Your pharmacist is there to answer your questions about the flu and how to ease your symptoms.
ARE YOU AT RISK?
Certain people are more likely to suffer from flu complications. Young children, older adults, and people with a chronic disease or compromised immune system can have a harder time fighting off the flu, which can become very serious if the person is not treated properly.
Pharmacists play a critical role in treating influenza. Talk to your pharmacist about the recommended treatment plan, according to your symptoms, and discuss any underlying issues or conditions that might require more attention.
EASE YOUR SYMPTOMS
If you have flu-like symptoms and are unsure if you need medical attention, consult your pharmacist. They will assess your situation and recommend the best course of action for you. Your pharmacist can also advise you on choosing over-the-counter medications to relieve flu symptoms such as nasal congestion, fever, sore throat, and muscle aches and pains.
GET A FLU SHOT
Each year, new flu vaccines are developed in accordance with recommendations issued by the World Health Organization, which are based on the strains of influenza in circulation and predictions on how they are likely to spread. The vaccines are manufactured before the flu season in order to be ready to be administered in advance. It takes about two weeks for the vaccine to take full effect after getting the shot.
Health Canada recommends that all Canadians age 6 months and over get an annual flu shot, especially if they are at risk of developing complications. The criteria for getting a flu shot free of charge vary from one province to another. Remember, it is possible to get a flu shot at most pharmacies across Canada. Check with your pharmacist whether you are eligible for a free shot. You can make an appointment to get vaccinated online or by phone.
Most pharmacists also offer vaccines to protect against diseases like pneumococcus and shingles. Ask for their availability at the pharmacy counter.
How to Minimize Exposure to The Flu
There are a few simple measures you can take to reduce the risk of contracting the flu virus. Washing hands and disinfecting surfaces can go a long way to reducing the transmission of viruses. Ask your pharmacist about proper hand washing technique and appropriate soaps and disinfectant products to use, particularly if you have young children at home.
With flu season right around the corner, it is important to be prepared—for yourself and for your loved ones who may be at higher risk of flu-related complications.
The information contained herein is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to provide complete information on the subject matter or to replace the advice of a health professional. This information does not constitute medical consultation, diagnosis or opinion and should not be interpreted as such. Please consult your health care provider if you have any questions about your health, medications or treatment.