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Home News-Telegram News Editorials FLU FIGHTERS: No reason to avoid flu shot

FLU FIGHTERS: No reason to avoid flu shot

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It's that time of the year again. The air becomes crisp; the leaves on the trees turn beautiful colors; and people get the flu. We can't stop the first two (and don't really want to), but the flu can be fought off - or at least we have a puncher's chance against it.

Unless you are living in a plastic bubble, the influenza virus can get you. More than 36,000 die each year in the U.S. from influenza. But flu shots can help fight off this nasty virus and let you enjoy the wonderful fall/winter weather of North Texas.

Health professionals are not predicting a worldwide flu pandemic this year. Although the H1N1 "swine flu" is still around, doctors are saying it lacks the same punch it had last year. While last year's flu season hit pregnant women and children the hardest, this season is expected to be tougher on senior citizens. Reports say that drug makers have made a stronger vaccine just for seniors.

But the flu vaccine won't help if we don't get the shot - and too many people avoid flu shots each and every year. Some have a defining fear of needles. Others hate the after-affects of the shot (yes, you can feel lousy the rest of the day - but better one day than one month). And some people just carry the belief that they won't get sick this year, perhaps because they didn't get sick last year.

If only it was true.

There really is no reason to avoid the flu shot, especially for those most vulnerable such as children and seniors. The shots aren't terribly expensive and are now available at most drug stores - there is no need for a doctor visit.

Stay healthy this flu season. Your family will thank you, your co-workers will thank you - and your body will thank you.

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