Doctors warn of possible spike in flu cases during holiday season

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STARKVILLE, Miss. (WCBI) – As the holiday season rolls around, so does the flu season.

According to a recent report from the CDC, about half the country is seeing moderate to high flu activity and that includes Mississippi and Alabama.

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Fever, cough and body aches.

According to the CDC people all across the state are suffering from the flu.

But in Starkville, doctors say flu season has been calm — for now.

“So far this flu season here in our clinic we’ve only seen a few cases at the hospital, they said they had 29 cases so far, which is pretty low activity so far. And I think a lot of that has to do, maybe with more people getting their flu shot,” said Dr. Josh Black.

However, with kids only days away from Christmas break, those numbers could be on the way up.

“I would say that it probably speeds things up a little bit because kids are going to be more in time hanging out together spreading germs,” said Dr. Black.

Many families may have trips planned for the holidays and that can sometimes lead to a weakened immune system.

“When schedules are altered. It does mess with your body some your immune system can be affected if you’re not doing your normal routine and so it can put you in increased risk for the flu,” said Dr. Black.

Dr. Black said one of the best ways to prevent the flu is to be proactive.

“It’s absolutely not too late to get your flu shot disease activity like I said is still low and so you still have time to get protected it takes a week or two for your immune system to kick in and protect you against the flu but definitely not too late,” said Dr. Black.

He said sometimes people are hesitant to take that step because of some misconceptions about the shot.

“It is not possible for the flu shot to, to actually cause the flu because it is an inactivated form of the virus it’s not a live vaccine. And so it cannot cause you to get the flu so people that will get it will feel a little lousy for a few days after they get it because your immune system is kicking in and protecting making those antibodies that protect you against the flu,” said Dr. Black.

Dr. Black said it is still possible to get the flu even if you get the shot. Some extra precautions you can take are to make sure you wash your hands. And if you do cough, cough into your elbow, not your hands.