Did you get a flu shot yet this year? If you did, it was smart thinking. The flu season is starting early and already hospitals around the country are overwhelmed with patients complaining of flu symptoms.
Getting the vaccine is your best protection. Public health officials say that this year's vaccine should protect you against as much a 75 percent of the viruses out there although it may be less effective in older people.
If you haven't yet received your shot, the Food and Drug Administration says it's not too late. It takes several weeks for the immunization to take effect, but that still gives you protection through a good part of the flu season, which typically ends in the spring.
The flu isn't the only thing making people sick this winter. Health officials say that some people who are suffering with flu-like symptoms may actually have a new norovirus that causes what we may think of as stomach flu.
Symptoms of the flu include fever, cough, runny nose, headaches, fatigue and joint pain. If you symptoms become severe, call your doctor. In most cases, bed rest does the trick.