Influenza: Dangers, Types & Reasons To Get Vaccinated

The Importance Of Seasonal Flu Vaccines

Seasonal Flu Vaccines occur when the flu season is quickening its progression. Doctors recommended that children and adults get vaccinated twice a year, starting as young as six months of age. They suggest two shots a year because the virus is continually changing, so researchers are trying year-round to keep up as multiple flu strains evolve.

National Influenza Vaccination Week

Why Is Influenza So Dangerous?

Influenza, or the flu, is a dangerous disease with the potential for an emergency medical situation. Every flu season is different, which is why it is so important that people make sure to update their vaccines annually. The flu is a viral respiratory illness that is very common and spreads quickly, especially during the colder months. The severity of the disease ranges from mild to life-threatening, although death from the flu is not very common.

Influenza attacks target the lungs, throat, and nose. The virus causes symptoms such as chills, muscle aches, headaches, fever, fatigue, congested and runny nose, and cough. While the flu has symptoms similar to those of the common cold, one good indicator of the flu is a sudden fever.

In most cases, rest and plenty of fluids are all that is needed to treat the flu. Over-the-counter, anti-inflammatory medications may also help. In more extreme cases, doctors may prescribe antiviral medications.

Why You Should Get The Flu Vaccine

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimated that from October 2018 up to May of this year, there have been between 37 million and 43 million cases of influenza. About half of these cases required medical visits. The CDC also reports with a 90 percent certainty that the flu is currently at its peak, which means now is a critical time to consider getting vaccinated.

The flu vaccine is the best way to prevent getting the flu. Once inoculated, the vaccine takes up to two weeks to take effect. While it is still possible to contract the flu after getting vaccinated, the chances are slim, and it would likely be a milder case of the flu.

What Are The Different Types Of Influenza?

There are four types of influenza virus, types A, B, C, and D. Types A and B are the two types that cause seasonal flu. Each type has various strains. The strains of each type can change quickly, so a vaccine can be less effective as the virus evolves. This year, B strains of influenza seem to be more prominent within the United States.

Type A Influenza

Type A influenza is the strain that infects birds and certain mammals. The virus can then be transmitted to humans.  Type A influenza is the type of infection that is responsible for widespread flu epidemics such as swine flu and avian flu. Both types A and B are constantly changing. However, type A influenza is known to mutate at a higher rate. Type A also differs from type B in that, it is categorized into different strains and subtypes, based on the kind of proteins found on the surface of the virus.

Type B Influenza

Like type A, type B influenza is responsible for seasonal flu epidemics. However, type B only accounts for about 25% of seasonal flu, and these infections typically occur during the end of the flu season. The main difference between types A and B is who is affected. Type influenza can be contracted from both animals and humans, but type B only transfers from human to human. Both A and B types are highly contagious, and both exhibit similar symptoms. While type A influenza is classified into several subtypes, type B influenza breaks down into only two
different lineages.

Types C & D Influenza

Vaccinations do not prevent people from getting types C and D influenza. Fortunately, the type D influenza virus is only found in cattle and is not known to affect people. Type C influenza is very rare, and symptoms are usually mild. While there is no way to prevent the two types, C and D flu viruses can be treated similarly to infections from A and B types.

Where Can I Get A Flu Vaccine In San Antonio?

Here’s a list of some places in San Antonio to get your flu vaccine:

The Importance Of Influenza Vaccinations

Getting vaccinated is vital because it dramatically reduces the risk of becoming infected. Furthermore, it also prevents the virus from spreading to someone else, especially to those who have not had a vaccine. So, to honor Influenza Vaccination Week this year, take the time to get vaccinated. It is not only a way to stay healthy, but it is also a public service that helps to contain a potential epidemic.

The Emergency Center is here for you if you or your family gets the flu. Never second guess, because the flu can worsen quickly. The Emergency Center provides up to 23 hours of Observation and offers 24/7 care with NO WAITING. Visit The Emergency Center’s convenient 24-hour location in San Antonio.


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The Emergency Center

San Antonio
11320 Alamo Ranch Pkwy
San Antonio, TX 78253

Phone: 210-485-3644