The annual influenza (flu) season is just around the corner.  
Southeast District Health Department is urging everyone 6 months and older to get a flu shot as soon as possible.  
The Centers for Disease Control states that people should get  flu vaccines before flu begins spreading in the community.
It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop in the body that protect against flu, so make plans to get vaccinated early in fall, before flu season begins.
The flu vaccine offers protection against the flu and its complications.
The flu vaccine is still the single best protection against the flu.
It is also helpful in reducing the length and severity of illness if someone does get the flu.
It is also important for patients who have flu symptoms, even if they have been vaccinated, to seek medical attention.  
There also are flu antiviral drugs that can be used to treat and prevent flu.
Practicing good health habits like covering your cough and washing your hands often can help stop the spread of germs and prevent respiratory illnesses like the flu.
The SEDHD suggests the following  tips to help you avoid the flu this year:

Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
Stay home when you are sick.
Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing.
Wash your hands often to help protect you from germs. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs are often spread when a person touches something that is contaminated with germs and then touches his or her eyes, nose, or mouth.
Practice other good health habits. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces at home, work or school, especially when someone is ill.
Get plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids, and eat nutritious food.

For more information on influenza and where to get the vaccine, contact the Southeast District Health Department, 877-777-0424 or www.sedhd.org.