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Keeping the Flu at Bay

No winter season is quite like the previous.One year we might be living in a winter wonderland, but only needing our coat, hat, scarf and gloves, and the next year we might be looking for our ice picks, shoe grippers, and hand warmers to help us make it through the bitter cold and icy tundra.Much like how no winter season is exactly the same, the flu season also can vary each year with fluctuating conditions, the severity, timing and duration.

We have known for many years that individuals 65 years and older have the greatest burden of severe flu disease, especially when compared to younger, healthier individuals. Naturally, one reason for this is due to weakened immune systems as we age. Because seniors tend to be at greater risk of serious complications from the flu, it is important to be preventative and to know the signs and symptoms of flu if they hit.

Symptoms of the flu include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue. A person may be infected with the flu without showing signs of a fever, but may be displaying respiratory complications. Some cases may also include vomiting and diarrhea.If you feel that you may be developing these symptoms, it is important to seek medical health. A medical examination will determine if antiviral drugs are needed. An antiviral drug may be a very important treatment as further complications can develop if it goes untreated.

Getting a yearly flu vaccine has also shown significant results in lowering the chances of catching flu viruses.Research published in 2016 showed that people 50 years and older who received the flu vaccination the previous winter reduced their risk of getting hospitalized from flu by 57%. Seniors 65 and older who received the "high dose vaccine", a variation specifically designed / recommended for seniors had 24% fewer influenza infections when compared to those who received the standard dose flu vaccine.

It is also necessary to practice good health habits to remain healthy. Cover coughs and sneezes and remember to wash your hands frequently, especially before and after eating, after using the restroom, and after returning from public places.

At Heritage Health, we take pride in practicing good health habits to keep unwanted viruses at bay. Please keep our seniors in mind when visiting your loved ones.If you are experiencing flu symptoms, it is best for both yourself and our residents to reschedule your visit.As always, if you have any questions regarding the flu or our preventative measures contact a facility near you.

Staying Healthy through Winter
Baby, It's Cold Outside!

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Wednesday, August 21, 2019

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Heritage Operations Group is proud to provide the senior population in Illinois with rehabilitative therapy services, skilled nursing care, specialized Alzheimer’s and dementia care, assisted and supportive living, independent living and pharmacy services.


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