Since Sept. 17, Salt Lake Community College’s Health & Wellness Services has offered a flu shot clinic.
Get vaccinated against flu
Wash your hands often
Try to limit exposure to infected people
Practice healthy habits.
- Eat a balanced diet.
- Get enough sleep.
- Exercise. It can help the immune system better fight off the germs that cause illness.
- Do your best to keep stress in check.
The first 400 students who attend the clinic can receive a free flu shot at the Taylorsville Redwood, South City, or Jordan campus. As of press time, about half of these free shots have been claimed.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends a flu vaccination every year, and according to the FDA Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, the flu shot prevents 70 to 90 percent of young, healthy adults from getting sick.
“It is recommended that you get the flu shot as soon as it is available. This should provide protection if the flu season comes early,” said Sharon Taylor, a certified nurse practitioner at Health & Wellness Services.
“Scared of needles”
After the 400 free flu shots are given out, students are still given the opportunity to receive a flu shot for only 17 dollars. Clinics outside of Salt Lake Community College normally charge up to $24.99 for a flu shot.
“I am scared of needles but I would rather get the shot than have the flu,” said SLCC student Bridget Martinez.
Although Salt Lake Community College’s Health and Wellness Program doesn’t offer the nasal spray form, it is a viable alternative for those that have a fear of needles. As the nasal spray is a live virus, Taylor only recommends it for adults under 55 years old.
Influenza can occur at any time of the year, but it’s most commonly contracted between October and May. The flu virus changes from year to year and the vaccine needs to be updated from one season to the next to protect against the most common circulating viruses.
There are over 200 types of viruses that can cause the flu, which is a large factor in the need for adults to get an annual vaccination. In addition, a person’s immune system declines in its effectiveness over time, so a yearly shot is recommended for optimal protection.
“Getting the flu shot prevents getting sick with the flu, which can be severe and cause time off work and school,” said Taylor.
Even though the shot will help prevent the flu, the FDA offers recommendations for young adults who get sick with influenza.
In order to overcome the symptoms and get better, infected people should get plenty of rest and drink plenty of liquids such as water, juice or soup.
Also, the spread of disease can be prevented by covering the mouth, washing hands and staying home. Another precaution is to stay away from smoking or drinking alcohol.
To avoid getting sick, visit the Health and Wellness online at slcc.edu/hw/.