By NADIA ALBIZU
All over the United States the flu season becomes a big issue between the months of November and March. The flu usually starts with symptoms like a high fever, headache, dry cough, sore throat, runny nose, muscle aches, nausea, and extreme exhaustion. Most healthy adults may be able to effect others one day before symptoms develop and up to five days after becoming sick. There are two ways to get vaccinated, the flu shot and a nasal spray flu vaccine. “I like to get the flu shot yearly,” said Amanda Roman, a 19-year-old from Vineland. “Even though the shot hurts, it’s a good way to stay healthy.”
Vaccine manufacturers are predicting that as many as 143 to 146 million doses of the flu vaccine will be produced, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. People infected with the influenza can spread it to others by a simple cough or sneeze. Complications of the flu can lead to bacterial pneumonia, ear infections, sinus infections, dehydration, and worsening or chronic medical conditions.
If pain in your arm is not up your alley, another way to get vaccinated is a by using the nasal spray flu vaccine (LAIV). Ashley Colvin, 19-years-old, said, “I still remember the first time I took the flu shot, I was in the 8th grade in the school nurse’s office. Now instead of going through the aching, I just use the spray; it’s totally different from the shot and gives me the same results.” The nasal spray flu vaccine is just like the flu shot. You can get it as early as September, and it should be repeated yearly. The nasal spray is good for anyone between the ages of 2 and 49, with the exception of any woman who is pregnant.
The Daily Journal and the free local Clinic Center of Disease Control and Prevention (www.cdc.gov) have listings of all the clinics in Cumberland County that offer free flu shots. The biggest organization in Cumberland County is the Community Health Care, Inc; they offer free flu vaccinations in the following areas:
Vineland locations: 1038 East Chestnut Avenue, 319 Landis Avenue and 484 S. Brewster Avenue.
Millville locations: 1200 N. High St.
Bridgeton locations: 5 Manheim Avenue, Suite 3 and 70 Cohansey St.
Children six to fifty-nine months, enrolled in childcare, or Pre School are required to have received flu shot before December 31st. The last week for any scheduled shot is December. 27, 2008. To make an appointment please call the Cumberland County Community Health Care, Inc at (856) 691-3330.