How Does it Spread?
The flu is
spread mainly by droplets made when people with the flu cough, sneeze or
talk. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are
nearby. Less often, a person might also get flu by touching a surface or
object that has flu virus on it and then touching their own mouth, eyes or
What are the Symptoms?
People who have the flu often feel some or all of these symptoms. People
often relate to having the flu as being “hit by a truck”.
fever* or feeling
runny or stuffy nose
muscle or body aches
fatigue (very tired)
Some people may have
vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults.
not everyone with flu will have a fever.
Can I Give the Flu to Other
You may be able to pass on the flu to someone else before you know you are
sick, as well as while you are sick. Most healthy adults may be able to
infect others beginning 1 day before symptoms start and up to 5-7 days after
becoming sick. Children and people with a weakened immune system might be
able to infect others for even a longer time.
How can I Protect Myself and those I Love from the Flu?
The single best way to prevent the flu is to get a flu vaccine each season.
There are two types of flu vaccines:
The "flu shot"
contains an inactivated (killed) virus. The seasonal flu shot is approved
for use in people 6 months of age and older.
The nasal–spray flu
vaccine –a vaccine
made with live, weakened flu viruses that do not cause the flu.
It is given by spraying a small amount of mist in the nose. Vaccination
with the nasal-spray
flu vaccine is for healthy* people 2-49 years of age who are not pregnant.
Even people who live with or care for those in a high risk group
(including health care workers) can get the nasal-spray flu vaccine as
long as they are healthy themselves and are not pregnant. The one
exception is health care workers who care for people with severely
weakened immune systems who require a protected hospital environment;
these people should get the inactivated flu vaccine (flu shot).
Can I get the flu from the flu
vaccines are made with killed virus or weakened virus. Some people may get
a mild sore arm, minor aching, and runny nose or feel a little tired for a
day or so. This is the body’s way of building protection against the flu.
When to Be Vaccinated Against Seasonal Flu
Timing and the
duration of the flu season may vary from year to year. While flu season
can begin as early as October, flu illness usually begins to strike Clinton
County in January and continues into the early spring. Due to that fact, we
begin our flu vaccine program in October to make sure our residents are
protected throughout the entire flu season.
Ways to Help Avoid Getting
ways to avoid both seasonal and H1N1 flu and prevent its spread are frequent
hand washing, use of alcohol based hand sanitizers, coughing or sneezing
into one’s sleeve, keeping at least six feet distance from people who have
respiratory symptoms, and staying home when you are sick.
CCHD How to
CCHD Is It a Flu or a Cold?
CCHD Flu Info for Schools
Flyers, Posters and Brochures to Post
for "Someone at Home has the Flu" brochure
for "Stay at Home" poster
for "Ask about a Mask" brochure
Who Should be Vaccinated?
flu vaccination is now encouraged for anyone over 6 months of age. While
everyone should get a flu vaccine each flu season, it is especially
important that certain people are vaccinated either because they are at high
risk of having serious flu-related complications or because they live with
or care for people at high risk for developing flu-related complications.
**NOTE: Children less than 3 years of age and
women who know that they are pregnant, can not receive flu vaccine that
contains more than trace amounts of the preservative thimerosal.
Click here for more information on Thimerosal at CDC:
(VIS) "Inactivated" Flu Vaccine
(VIS) "Live Intranasal" Flu Vaccine (nose spray)
“High risk” are
those who have medical conditions such as:
Asthma (even if
neurodevelopmental conditions [including disorders of the brain, spinal
cord, peripheral nerve, and muscle such as cerebral palsy, epilepsy
(seizure disorders), stroke, intellectual disability (mental retardation),
moderate to severe developmental delay, muscular dystrophy, or spinal cord
Chronic lung disease
(such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease [COPD] and cystic fibrosis)
Heart disease (such
as congenital heart disease, congestive heart failure and coronary artery
(such as sickle cell disease)
such as diabetes
(such as inherited metabolic disorders and mitochondrial disorders)
system due to disease or medication (such as people with HIV or AIDS, or
cancer, or those on chronic steroids)
People younger than
19 years of age who are receiving long-term aspirin therapy
People who are
morbidly obese (Body Mass Index [BMI] of 40 or greater)
Who Else Should get Vaccinated?
Other people for whom vaccination is especially important are:
People who live in
nursing homes and other long-term care facilities
People who live with
or care for those at high risk for complications from flu, including:
Health care workers
Persons living in a
home with someone who has medical conditions.
and caregivers of children younger than 5 years of age. Remember children
younger than 6 months are at highest risk of flu-related complications but
are too young to get vaccinated. We must get vaccinated to protect them.
Who Should NOT be Vaccinated Against
People who have a
severe allergy to chicken eggs.
People who have had
a severe reaction to a flu vaccination in the past.
People who have had
Guillian-Barré syndrome ( a rare neuromuscular disease)
than 6 months of age (influenza vaccine is not approved for use in this
People who have a
moderate or severe illness with a fever should wait to get vaccinated
until their symptoms lessen.
To receive more information, call or
visit us at:
Clinton County Health Department
Health Services Unit
133 Margaret Street
Plattsburgh, NY 12901
Tel: (518) 565-4848