Get Shot Up Before The Season’s Flu Gets You Down

That weekend cold front was a brisk reminder to start preparing for winter ahead. There are cashmere sweaters and thigh-high boots to bring out from hiding in the closet. Kitchens are heating up with soups, meat loaves and homemade breads. Lemonade and icy drinks are being replaced by hot chocolates and Irish coffee. Noses are detecting the scents of pinion wood burning in chimineas and fire pits.

Connie Yates and Tom Thumb

And speaking of noses, it’s definitely time to get the infamous flu shot.

To make the “ouch” a little less painful, Tom Thumb’s Connie Yates is offering a 10% off coupon on groceries up to $200, if you get your shot in one of its pharmacies. Why not get “shot up” at Tom Thumb’s and use your coupon for holiday feasting. Or, better yet, load up on canned food goods and donate them to your favorite food bank. The coupon is good through March 31!

And, no. Connie didn’t pay for this flu reminder.

A Gentle Reminder: It’s Time To Get Shot Up

It’s getting pretty late to get that necessary injection if you’re going to make it through the holiday party season. No, not that Botox treatment. Rather it’s your flu shot. After all it takes a couple of weeks to settle in to fight off that nasty, sneezy, headachy stuff. And you just know that you’ll want to be prepared for all the hugging and air kissing that’s in your future.

So, toddle to you fav doctor or pharmacy and get the needle. And, no, you probably won’t get a lollipop, but then you probably won’t be getting the flu either.

Exactly What Have You Been Hosting Over Spring Break?

Spring break has been in high gear for most of March. But many folks have been sidetracked by runny noses, hacking coughs, watery eyes and sore throats. Some swear they’ve had the flu despite having their flu shot last fall. Others blame the budding of flowers and trees for their allergies hitting hard. Still others simply write the problem off to an ordinary cold.

Any of the three is pretty unpleasant and inconvenient. After all, tearing up when making a presentation can be pitiful. And is there anything as un-rosy as a red nosy?

So, to set the record sorta straight, here are the symptoms for each of the three, so you’ll know exactly what’s being ailing you and/or your pals:

Common cold

  • Symptoms: Stuffy, runny nose; sneezing; sore throat; a mild fever and cough last up to two weeks
  • Treatment: Drink lots of fluids, get plenty of rest and take over-the-counter meds to ease symptoms. For the sore throat, gargle with salt water. Antibiotics won’t have an effect on the ordinary cold.
  • Period of contagion: Most contagious one day prior to symptoms appear and for the following week.

Flu

  • Symptoms: High fever, headaches, achy muscles, sore throat, tired, nasal congestion and cough last 10-days to two weeks
  • Treatment: Drink lots of fluids, get plenty of rest, take over-the-counter meds to ease symptoms and check with your doctor for prescription anti-viral medications
  • Period of contagion: May be Typically one to four days, but could possibly last as long as two weeks

Airborne allergies

  • Symptoms: Sneezing, stuffy nose and itchy, watery eyes as long as allergens exist
  • Treatment: Over-the-counter medicines including antihistamines, decongestants. Check with an allergist for prescription and long-term treatments.
  • Contagion: Not contagious

Make sure that you don’t play pharmacist and mix medications. They can do more harm than good. So, check with a healthcare professional like your primary care doctor or pharmacist.

Also, if you think you have a cold or the flu, be selfish and don’t share. If you are living with someone who is under the weather with the contagious stuff, make sure you wash your hands, avoid close contact and stock up on broths, hot teas, over-the-counter drugs and tissues.

Sniff And Stay Home

It’s that time of year when hot chocolate and flutes of champagne are being replaced by shots of NyQuil™ — and Vicks rubbed on the chest is the scent du jour. Yup, people are coughing, sneezing and just plain feeling rotten. And this off-again. on-again chilly, damp  weather isn’t making things much better.

While North Texas is big on giving, there is no need to share the cold/flu. So, if you just think you’re coming down with something, stay home. You can still email and call friends and family without sharing your ills.

 

MySweetCharity Reminder: Do Yourself A Favor And Get Shot

While Ebola virus is getting all the news coverage, healthcare workers stress that the upcoming flu season is a great concern, too. The good news is that a flu shot can reduce your chances of catching influenza.

Bargain hunters: If you shop around, you just might find a pharmacy that will also provide an added incentive for getting your arm stuck.

And while thinking about preventative measures, consider cutting down your chances of encountering pneumonia. When combined with the flu, the twosome is the fifth leading cause of death in this country. But pneumonia is preventable. Yup, they’ve come up with a vaccine and strongly recommend it for those under two and over 65 and other vulnerable types.

Here’s an idea. If you’re going to get a flu shot in one arm, why not get a pneumonia shot in the other arm. After all, you don’t want one arm to feel left out.

MySweetCharity Reminder: It’s Time To Flu Away

The months ahead are going to be mammothly busy. Looking at the calendar is enough to wear out the finest stiletto heel. For this reason, the MySweetCharity community has got to stay healthy . . . very healthy.

To do this, take precautions! You know the usual stuff like washing your hands, using hankies and all the instructions that your mother told you.

But don’t forget that flu shot. And if possible get the quad. It’s as hard to find as a Prada purse for half price.

BTW, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also recommends that munchkins under the age of five receive the “children’s version” (PPSV23) of the vaccine. Check with your pediatrician.

Also, if you’re over 60, you can just march on in to your local pharmacists and get a pneumonia shot without a prescription. It’s a one-stop-shot because it “gives lifelong immunity.”

If you’re still claiming to be under 60, then you’re gonna need your doc’s approval.

And while you’re getting all shot up, try to remember the last time you got that tetanus shot. If you can’t remember, then it’s time to roll up the sleeve.

WFAA’s Jason Wheeler Needs To Be Shot

Last night on WFAA the new kid-on-the-block anchor Jason Wheeler confessed he still hadn’t gotten his flu shot. Thought medical reporter Janet St. James was going to collapse on the floor. Did you see how big her eyes got?

This year’s flu is as deadly as the summer’s West Nile Virus, but there are steps that can be taken to reduce the threat.

First, if you just think you’re coming down with the flu or even a cold, stay home. Love ya, but don’t need you around to share.

Second, get in bed, drink lots of liquids (we’re not talking alcohol and you know that), sleep and have a humidifier going full “steam ahead.” (First pun of the day.) One friend even suggested sleeping with a moist heating pad on the chest.

Third, love ya, but let’s cut down on the kisses. . . even the air kisses and the hugs and even handshakes. Like the late Larry Hagman, just use a simple knuckle knock or  elbow nudge.

Fourth, wash your hands and follow it up with a nice hand lotion. You don’t want to ruin your nice silky skin!

Fifth, if you’re really starting to feel it’s going beyond normal “yucks,” call your doctor and be “patient.” (Sorry, there goes another pun.) There are a lot of folks calling, but do call.

Finally, if you haven’t gotten your flu shot, stop reading, get in your car and drive to Tom Thumb, Walgreens, your doctor’s office or anywhere that’s providing shots.

Let’s hope that tonight Jason reports that he was a big boy, rolled up his sleeve and got “needled.” (Final pun)

UPDATE:

1. Jason got shot this evening and admitted it didn’t hurt at all. He didn’t even feel it.

2. It was the first time he had gotten a flu shot.

Do Yourself A Favor And Get Shot

Owie! Owie! Owie! Ahead is flu season. Don’t care how small the needles may be, it still hurts, but it still means less time suffering from the flue.  So, get a flu shot. You can get the shot anywhere including your favorite drugstore and/or grocery. Okay, so you might have problems getting it at Hermes or 7-11, but really!

Oh, so you don’t believe that it can make a difference. You did nicely last year without one, so why bother? It takes time and — ouch! — it hurts.

And while you’re at it, think about a test for tuberculosis. Oh, you thought it was so past tense. Wrong! It’s a nasty disease that is can easily be detected, but it’s up to you.

And, if you’re getting to be an AARP favorite target, think about getting a pneumonia shot. Yes, it’s expensive, but many insurance plans will support it and it’s not like you have to get it every year. It really upsets the MySweetCharity community when someone succumbs to pneumonia. You’re way too important. Heck, the dang shot is available everywhere including Tom Thumbs. Next time you pick up a quart of fat-free milk, get a pneumonia hit. The milk will go with your cereal and the shot will make you last longer.

You’re way too important to all of us. Please get one, two or all three shots.