Flu is easily confused with a cold, but is is a viral infection that causes serious respiratory tract infections and the onset is very sudden.
You can’t avoid people … but you CAN avoid catching the flu. GET YOUR FLU SHOT NOW!
YOUR QUESTIONS ANSWERED
Seasonal changes are upon us, and so is flu
season … for everyone! Now, more than ever
we should protect ourselves and our families
FLU QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
Below is a list of the most commonly asked questions on flu.
WHAT IS FLU?
Flu is easily confused with a cold. Flu is a viral infection that causes serious
respiratory tract infections. The symptoms are similar to cold symptoms, except that
the onset is very sudden. One morning you may be well, and that afternoon
you’re running a high fever and feel really ill.2
HOW IS IT SPREAD?
Via droplets when infected people cough or sneeze near you.2
When you touch infected surfaces and then touch your eyes, mouth or nose straight afterwards.2
Through flu germ ‘deposits’ left behind in enclosed, crowded spaces like lifts.2
CAN CATCHING THE FLU CAUSE OTHER ILLNESSES / COMPLICATIONS?
Yes it could. This is especially true for children and adults that are considered “high risk”.2
Complications can include:2
• Asthma flare-ups
• Heart problems
• Ear infections
More than 30 years of global flu prevention1
WHAT CAN I DO TO PROTECT MYSELF AND MY FAMILY / LOVED ONES?
- Get vaccinated with the seasonal flu vaccine.2
- You can also protect yourself and others by practicing good personal hygiene e.g. washing your hands and flushing away used tissues.2
HOW DO FLU VACCINES WORK?
The vaccine is made up of a small inactive part of that season’s flu virus. Being inactive,
it cannot infect your body with the virus, yet it allows your body to make antibodies to
fight the flu. In that way, you’re building up immunity.2,3
ARE SOME PEOPLE MORE AT RISK THAN OTHERS?
Yes. These are the high-risk groups:2
- People aged 65 years or older.
- People who have chronic illnesses such as asthma, heart disease, kidney disease and diabetes.
- People with weakened immune systems, e.g. HIV+.
- Residents of nursing homes and other long-term care facilities.
- Pregnant women and women up to two weeks after giving birth.
- Young children under 5 years, and especially those under 2 years of age.
- People who are very overweight (according to a measurement called BMI that can be taken by a healthcare professional e.g. nurse/doctor)
WHAT ABOUT CHILDREN?
Children at school or in day care centres have an increased risk of catching flu and should be vaccinated.4
WHY SHOULD I GET VACCINATED ANNUALLY?
Flu viruses change, and every year the flu vaccine is altered to match the viruses expected to circulate that year.2
WHAT ARE THE “FLU LIKE SYMPTOMS” OF INFLUENZA?
• Runny nose2
• Aches and pains2
• Diarrhoea (runny stomach)3
• Sore throat2
1. Van de Witte SV, Nauta J, Giezeman-Smits KM, et al. Trials in Vaccinology 2012;1:42-48. 2. Mayo Clinic. Influenza (flu). 2017. (Online) Available at: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/flu/symptoms-causes/syc-20351719?p=1 (Last accessed 12 December 2017). 3. Influenza FAQ document 2017. National Institute for Communicable Diseases. Available from http://www.nicd.ac.za/assets/files/Influenza%20FAQ(1).pdf (Last accessed 07 December 2017). 4. National Foundation for Infectious Diseases. Flu Care in Day Care: The impact of Vaccination Requirements. Available at: http://www.nfid.org/day-care-report (Last accessed 17 January 2018).