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The Flu Vaccine: Who Will You Do It For?

This time of year, it’s important to receive a flu vaccine. By becoming vaccinated, you protect yourself from getting sick and passing influenza to patients, co-workers, family members and others.

LMC is launching a flu vaccine campaign. Personalize a sign with the name of the person or persons for whom you get the flu vaccine. Then, ask someone to take a photo of you and your sign with a cell phone and post these pictures to Facebook or Instagram, or text the photo to your loved ones. Use hashtags #NotJustForYou! and #FluVaccine.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that anyone 6 months of age and older should be vaccinated annually as the first and most important step in protecting against this serious disease. Vaccination is especially important for health care workers and those who live with or care for people at high risk of flu complications, such as children younger than 2 years, adults older than 65 years and pregnant women.

Sometimes, people can be skeptical of the flu vaccine. In this news video from WIS-TV, LMC doctor Jeremy Crisp of Lexington Family Practice Northeast talks about that.

Meanwhile, take everyday preventive steps to reduce the spread of germs:
• Wash your hands often with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub.
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
• Get plenty of sleep and exercise, manage your stress, drink fluids and eat healthy foods.
• Cough into your sleeve instead of your hands if you do not have a tissue.
• If you have flu-like symptoms, stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone without taking fever-reducing medicine.
• While sick, limit contact with others as much as possible.

Tailgating in the Southern Heat

While football season may take place in the fall, here in the South, temperatures are still climbing into the 90s. WIS-TV recently interviewed our clinicians about tailgating on a hot day.

In this clip, clinical nutrition manager Donna Quirk talks about keeping food safe in warm temperatures.

In this segment, Dr. Todd Crump talks about how the heat can affect your body during a day in the hot sun that’s often mixed with drinking alcohol.

Back-to-School Immunizations

With guest blogger, Dr. Brandon Emery of Lexington Pediatric Practice, a Lexington Medical Center physician practice

This time of year makes us think of new backpacks, freshly sharpened pencils and stylish pairs of bright sneakers. But before you send your child back to school, be sure they’re up to date on important vaccinations.

Dr. Brandon Emery

Dr. Brandon Emery

Children ages 10 to 11 should receive a whooping cough (pertussis) booster through the Tdap vaccine. Whooping cough is bacterial infection with violent coughing fits marked by a “whoop” sound while gasping for breath. Children are usually vaccinated for whooping cough as young children. The vaccine provides excellent immunity but decreases over time. That makes older children, teenagers and adults more likely to contract whooping cough and spread it to others.

Around age 11, children should also receive a vaccine for meningitis. Meningitis is an infection of the protective membrane around the brain and spinal cord. While the disease is rare, it can be deadly. Symptoms of meningitis are a high fever, severe headaches, and neck stiffness along with altered mental status, sensitivity to light, and vomiting. Teenagers should receive a meningitis booster again between the ages of 16 and 18, before attending college. The disease is known to spread among individuals who live close to each other, such as in a college dorm.

circle of handsAdditionally, children who are 11 can receive a hepatitis A vaccine. Hepatitis A is a contagious liver disease. Patients catch it when they come in contact with objects, food or drinks contaminated by an infected person.

Finally, parents of school-age children should also make sure that their children have had two rounds of the chicken pox vaccine or have immunity. Boys and girls during adolescence should receive an HPV vaccine to prevent several forms of cancer.

For more information about these vaccines, call your doctor or Lexington Pediatric Practice at (803) 359 – 8855. LexPediatricPractice.com