Kids getting sick during flu season can often feel inevitable.

Young immune systems just aren’t as strong as adult ones. That, coupled with the fact that children often ignore hygienic habits that can help prevent the spread of the flu (influenza) virus from one human to another, means that school aged kids are at increased risk of getting sick multiple times each flu season.

No parent wants to watch their child suffer through a nasty bout of the flu. Not to mention that a child who’s so sick that they must stay home from school can often cause logistical problems for parents who work but don’t have a second option for child care.

Here at Medics USA urgent care in Falls Church, we’re dedicated to helping your entire family stay healthy all year long. That’s why we strongly encourage local families to come into our urgent care clinic to get their flu shot before the season starts. This simple act can go a long way toward shielding your kids (and yourself!) from the terrible symptoms of the influenza virus. However, getting your flu shot isn’t the only way to protect yourself and the ones you love.

Keep reading for a list of other essential health tips that can help your family avoid the high fevers and dripping noses associated with flu season.

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Dispelling Myths About The Flu Vaccine

“Flu is more dangerous than the common cold for children and can lead to serious health conditions like pneumonia or bacterial infections. Each year many children are hospitalized and some die from the flu,” explains the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Despite this reality, many parents are still unsure about whether or not to give their children flu shots thanks to many confusing myths circulating the internet. For clarity, it’s always important to rely on the science:

You can’t get the flu from the flu vaccine – While there can sometimes be mild side effects of getting your flu shot, such as nausea, sleepiness, headache, muscle aches, and chills, most people only experience a little tenderness at the site of the injection. The flu vaccine is made from killed viruses, so it’s not possible to contract the flu from them.

Flu vaccines are about 60% effective – Sure, it would be nice if that number was 99% and scientists are surely working on it. For now, comfort yourself with the knowledge that even if you do still contract the flu, it will be a much milder form of the disease. “Vaccinated people who get the flu usually get a mild form of the disease, just the sniffles, according to a recent study. People who are not vaccinated will be in bed with fever and miserable,” continues the American Academy of Pediatrics.

How To Protect Your Kids During Flu Season

  • Teach your child to wash their hands often, or help them do it
  • Don’t share drinking or eating utensils
  • Don’t touch nose, eyes, or mouth with unwashed hands
  • Cover your nose when coughing or sneezing
  • Stay well hydrated with water and low-sugar, non-caffeinated beverages
  • Wipe down frequently touched surfaces (like toys!) at home, work, and school to reduce germ transfer

It’s not too late to get your flu season shot! Contact the Falls Church Medics USA urgent care today.