Flu experts agree that this season is shaping up to be nasty in the US. In California alone, 27 people under the age of 65 have died from the flu, and 26 states (plus New York City) are now reporting high flu activity.
Anyone within a six foot radius can give you their flu, especially if that person is coughing, sneezing, or talking, according to the CDC. That kind of person-to-person transmission is more likely to cause an infection than simply touching a surface with some flu virus on it then reaching for your nose or your mouth. But it’s still important to wash your hands thoroughly and avoid touching your face with your hands. Handwashing and facemasks can also be effective barriers to illness if someone you live with catches the flu.
The flu vaccine is not as effective this year as it has been in the past, but it’s still a good idea to get vaccinated because the shot is very effective at preventing certain strains. Flu season can last into May, so if you haven’t gotten your dose yet, it’s not too late.
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