Mission: To save lives and reduce hospitalizations by protecting children, families, and communities against influenza.
Insights on Influenza

How to Prepare for the Next Flu Season

text reading: how to prepare for flu season
Posted on August 31, 2023
Share this article:

While flu isn’t usually top of mind during the busy summer months, it’s always important to plan ahead to prepare for the next flu season. In the midst of vacations, summer camps, sports, and picnics, remembering to stay vigilant on flu preparedness is key to staying protected and healthy so when flu season hits in the fall and into winter, you are one step ahead.

Stock up on Flu-Fighting Essentials

Don’t forget to pick up essentials to fight the flu when you are out shopping! This includes having masks on hand should you need one, disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer for on-the-go, disinfectant spray, paper towels (or reusable cloths) for wiping down frequently touched surfaces, latex gloves, and antibacterial soap. Having these essentials on hand will make it easier to kill germs.

Plan your Annual Flu Vaccine

According to the CDC, influenza vaccination is the single best way to help protect yourself and your family from the flu each year. When you get an annual flu vaccine, you’re less likely to suffer from the flu and reduce your risk of hospitalization and death. Getting vaccinated also helps protect others you may come into contact with, such as family members, friends, co-workers, and community members.

The ideal time to get your vaccine is by the end of October. An excellent way to remember this is to get vaccinated by Halloween! As you put together your to-do list, make sure “get vaccinated against flu” is on the calendar. And make it a family affair – schedule your whole family’s flu shots on the same day so it’s all done at once. Some doctor’s offices even offer vaccine clinics. Have a student going off to college? Check their college’s health clinic website or local pharmacy to see when you can schedule their flu vaccine when they are away.

Have a “Flu Plan”

As prepared as we can be, sometimes flu still happens. Even if you still get sick, people who are vaccinated have less severe flu symptoms and are less likely to be hospitalized or die from flu-related complications. If you do experience symptoms, there are steps you can take.

First, get tested – it is so simple and can be done very quickly. Flu symptoms can look like many other illnesses, and testing is the only way to know for sure. Knowing which virus is making you sick allows your healthcare provider to give you the best treatment. And for you to stay home so you can protect those around you. Next, if you do test positive for flu, antivirals can be prescribed to lessen symptoms and decrease the risk of flu hospitalizations and deaths.

Remember these three things to fight the flu: vaccinate, test, and treat. You can print this one-pager out now and hang it up as a handy reminder during flu season.

Be Aware of Other Viruses

As a reminder, there are other respiratory viruses still circulating. During the 2022-2023 flu season, a “tripledemic” occurred with multiple respiratory viruses circulating, in particular COVID-19 and RSV (Respiratory Syncytial Virus). Respiratory viruses impact not only us but our families and loved ones around us, too. And RSV can be especially dangerous for some infants and young children. Staying up-to-date on these viruses (and available vaccines and boosters) on the CDC’s website is a great way to stay informed and safe.

While we are all busy, getting vaccinated against the flu should always be a “must-do.” Just ask Mikalee Byerman. Her daughter Bryerlee’s flu illness was almost deadly when she was just four years old, but thankfully, she survived. Before Bryerlee became sick, Mikalee was a single mom who was overscheduled with commitments. She says now that “Life gets in the way. But it can’t. I didn’t realize that every day I waited, I was putting her life at risk. I’ll never be late again.”

The better prepared, the less likely you will miss out on life’s important moments and keep your family and community safe.

 

You might also be interested in...

Advances in Flu Vaccine Technology Over the Years
Rock Out the Flu 2024 Recap
Impact Story: Commemorating the 20th Anniversary of Families Fighting Flu
Stay Informed
Sign up for our Weekly Flu News and quarterly newsletter, Fighting Influenza, to stay up-to-date on the latest flu news.
Newsletter

LOGO LICENSE AGREEMENT

You are required to accept all of the terms and conditions in this License Agreement in order to receive a limited, non-exclusive, non-transferable, non-assignable, royalty-free license to use the FAMILIES FIGHTING FLU, INC. logo, displayed below (the “FFF Logo”), from Families Fighting Flu, Inc. (“FFF”). In order to accept these terms and conditions, you must click the “I Accept” button below.

  1. FFF hereby grants to you, and you accept, a limited, non-exclusive, non-transferable, non-assignable, royalty-free license to use the FFF Logo, which you may download and use solely in online and print earned media publications for a period of no more than six (6) months in the United States.
  2. You acknowledge that the FFF Logo is a valid trademark; that FFF is the sole owner of the FFF Logo; and that FFF retains all right, title, and interest in and to the FFF Logo. You agree that any and all use that you make of the FFF Logo, and any and all goodwill arising from your use of the FFF Logo, shall inure exclusively to the benefit of FFF.  You also agree that you shall not challenge the validity of the FFF Logo or FFF’s ownership or title thereto during the term of the License Agreement or thereafter.
  3. You agree that you shall use the FFF Logo only in the form shown above, and that you shall not alter, modify, change, or edit the FFF Logo in any manner.
  4. You acknowledge the valuable goodwill and reputation in the FFF Logo, and that it is essential that the high standards and reputation associated with the FFF Logo be maintained. You therefore agree to use the FFF Logo consistent with the highest standards of quality so as to protect and maintain the FFF Logo and FFF’s rights therein.
  5. FFF shall have the right to review and inspect your use of the FFF Logo at any time. FFF, in its sole discretion, may determine that you are not using the FFF Logo in an acceptable manner and require that you discontinue your use of the FFF Logo.  To the extent that FFF requires that you discontinue your use of the FFF Logo, you agree that you shall remove the FFF Logo from all online and print earned media publications as soon as practicable under the circumstances, and that you shall not use the FFF at any time in the future.
  6. You must include the following notice in connection with any use of the FFF Logo: “The Families Fighting Flu, Inc. logo is the registered trademark of Families Fighting Flu, Inc.”
I Accept