According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the flu has caused between 9.3 million and 49 million illnesses each year in the United States since 2010.

Our teams at AFC Urgent Care TN want you to know the signs to watch out for when it comes to having the flu, as well as ways to prevent the flu virus.

What Is the Flu?

Also known as “influenza,” the flu is an extremely contagious respiratory illness that is caused by viruses that affect the throat, lungs and nose.

The flu is rather misleading, since even if you experience only mild symptoms, you are highly contagious, making it very important to stay at home and seek medical care.

Flu Symptoms

  • Fever over 100.4 F
  • Aching muscles
  • Chills
  • Sweats
  • Headache
  • Dry, persistent cough
  • Fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Nasal congestion
  • Sore throat

Will the Flu Vaccine Give Me the Flu?

No. While the flu shot—and other vaccinations—can give you symptoms around the injection site such as a sore arm, it cannot give you the flu.

This misconception persists because you can get the flu in the two weeks following vaccination, since your body does not yet have the antibodies needed to fend it off. But that’s not the result of the vaccine.

Flu Prevention 101

  • Get the flu vaccine as early in the season as possible.
  • Wash your hands regularly using soap and water.
  • Use alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap is unavailable.
  • Boost your immune system with healthy lifestyle habits.
  • Disinfect surfaces often.

Do you think you might be suffering from the flu? Visit one of our AFC Urgent Care TN locations today for a flu test.