The CDC points out several key differences between the 2015-2016 flu season, and the 2016-2017 flu season. Generally, influenza symptoms–according to the CDC–are going to peak between December and March, though they’ll start as early as August for the following season; depending on your region and factors like economic stability or population density. As economies fluctuate and populations increase, certain trends are going to specify best practices when it comes to combating recurrent viral scourge. The CDC points out several things about the 2016-2017 in specific:
- Use Injectable Influenza Vaccinations
- Different Influenza Virus Kinds Are Circulating, Predicating Updated Vaccines
- This Season Will Have New Vaccines
- Those With Egg Allergies Have Different Recommendations
- Generic Oseltamivir, An Antiviral Drug, Is Available In Pill Form
Flu vaccines that can be injected are more effective, as the body is more receptive to this kind of inoculation. Nasal or oral injections aren’t likely to be as effective, and can simply pass through the body’s digestive system without inculcating the necessary immune system response.
One of the reasons people get sick (whether or not they’ve had a flu vaccine) on a yearly basis owes to influenza developments over time. Just as you become more muscular as you work out, influenza becomes more resistant to your immune system and traditional vaccination measures from season to season. This means different kinds of flu virus are going to be in circulation annually.
What Strains Of Flu Are Protected Against In 2016-2017?
There are three primary kinds of influenza being protected against this season. They include two type A variations; California and Hong Kong, which are H1N1 and H3N2 respectively. The third strain being protected against is a B strain known in Brisbane. The California strain was seen in 2009, the Hong Kong in 2014, and the Brisbane strain is a B/Victoria lineage type seen in 2008.
There’s a circular nature to influenza; what is seen one year likely won’t characterize the next year’s cycle. While such influenza outbreaks aren’t entirely predictable, they are more predictable now than they’ve been in the past.
If you have egg allergies, you don’t have to wait thirty minutes after you’ve received the flu vaccine as in previous years. That’s if you’ve got more severe egg allergies. You may remain under brief observation, but that’s it. If you have light egg allergies, such as hives, then you won’t even have to do this.
Oseltamivir, Or Tamiflu
Oseltamivir also goes by the name “Tamiflu”. It is an antiviral drug designed to prevent against influenza types A and B. Influenza type C is often less affecting than types A and B, so there aren’t as many inoculation/antiviral options available on the market. This can be effective, but there are some serious side effects to consider; such as shaking, hallucinations, and/or disorientation.
Vaccinations and antiviral drugs can help protect you and your loved ones from influenza, but there are considerations. Consider caffeine, which is a psychoactive analgesic mimicking certain aspects of your brain’s normal activity such that when it is rescinded from your body, you get a headache. You don’t take vaccines or antiviral drugs as regularly as you take caffeine, so you’re less likely to build up dependency; but there is still a possibility.
The best way to combat flu is to practice regular hygiene (bathe regularly and wash hands with hot, soapy water), eat healthy, and exercise regularly. Influenza vaccines can diminish effects of the flu, but won’t entirely prevent it. Nothing can. Proper health and vaccination can, however, keep it from impacting you as hard.