Cold-Proof Your Winter
Is It a Cold or the Flu?Are you too sick to go to work?
"Before you drag yourself to the office, consider whether you feel well enough to actually work," says Joshua Riff, MD, who, as chief medical director for Target, advises the company's 355,000 employees on how to stay well. "If you're going to have a hard time getting anything done, then it's best to stay home. Otherwise you're needlessly putting your coworkers at risk, and you could be prolonging your illness by not taking the time to rest."
Attention, needlephobes: A new microinjection flu shot called Fluzone Intradermal has a needle that's 90 percent shorter than that of the traditional flu shot and is equally effective, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "It penetrates only the top layer of your skin instead of the skin and the muscle, so you may find it less painful," says Dr. Fryhofer. Still nervous about getting pricked? Opt for the nasal spray vaccine, FluMist, which is approved for all healthy people with the exception of those who are pregnant. There's still time to get vaccinated for this flu season, but do it now because it takes about two weeks for your immune response to kick in. Go to flu.gov/whereyoulive to find out where to receive the flu vaccine in your area. If you want the new shot or the nasal spray and your usual location doesn't have it, speak with your doctor.
Originally published in FITNESS magazine, January 2012.
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