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All Posts Tagged: flu shots

What Are the Most Common Reasons Patients Use Urgent Care?

It’s no secret that urgent care centers are growing in popularity. It seems that every town and city has begun seeing them pop up one after another, but why is that? Urgent care centers are changing the way that the world of medicine works, let’s find out how! 

Why Are Urgent Care Centers So Popular?

Did you know that urgent care centers are one of the fastest growing branches of the medical industry? The last few years have seen rapid growth as patient begin to notice the perks of utilizing an urgent care center rather than an emergency room. A few of the most notable reasons why patients are choosing urgent care include: 

  • Cost – urgent care centers provide high quality care at an affordable price. The exact same testing and treatment options of an emergency room are offered at a fraction of the cost you would find at an emergency room or even a primary care physician. 
  • Time – urgent care centers operate on a first come first serve basis. That means that you’re treated in the order you arrive, regardless of what you’re there for. A traditional emergency room operates differently, seeing the most severe cases first. While this helps save lives, it leaves less-severe patients waiting for hours before they’re ever seen. Urgent care centers are helping to get patients seen faster and unclogging emergency rooms all at the same time. 
  • Flexibility – urgent care centers are great for people needing care that they could get from their primary care physician but are unable to get due to their schedules. Urgent cares typically open early and stay open late so you can come by when it fits into your schedule. 

What Do Urgent Care Centers Do?

The most common reasons to visit an urgent care include: 

  • Stitches 
  • Muscle strains
  • Minor fractures
  • Infections – ear infection, UTI, sinus infection, etc. 
  • Flu vaccine 
  • Physicals 
  • STD testing 
  • Respiratory illness – bronchitis, pneumonia, etc. 

Urgent care centers offer on-site x-ray imaging, blood work, and much more! Unless you’re suffering from a life-threatening injury or illness, urgent care will likely be able to give you the care that you need. 

Next time you’re in need of injury care, illness care, preventative care, or even just a physical, visit your local urgent care! Look online to find the nearest urgent care to you and learn more about their hours of operation and services offered. 

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What are Common Cold and Flu Symptoms?

Everyone suffers from sickness from time to time, and cold and the flu are two common illnesses that are easily spread. Although they have similar symptoms, the treatments for colds and the flu are different, so it’s important to know which one you have. You want to start treatment and feel better as soon as possible, so how can you tell which sickness you have?

Why You Need to Know the Difference

Colds and the flu are both illnesses that affect the respiratory system, but they are caused by different viruses. This also means that the treatment for colds and the flu are different. You may be able to manage the symptoms with the same over the counter medications, but the underlying cause cannot be treated the same. The symptoms for both the cold and the flu can be very similar, making them almost impossible to distinguish from each other on your own. 

A cold can linger for weeks and make it uncomfortable or impossible to get through your day. The flu can do the same, but if left untreated the flu can turn into pneumonia, which can be fatal. 

Symptoms

Because the symptoms of colds and the flu are so similar, it can be hard to tell them apart. Symptoms they share are a cough, runny or stuffy nose, sneezing, sore throat, body aches, headaches, weakness, and fatigue. Flu symptoms are usually stronger than cold symptoms and may be more debilitating. 

The flu is much more likely to give you a fever and chills than a cold, although a cold may have these symptoms too. The flu can cause vomiting and/or diarrhea. The flu can come on very abruptly, while cold symptoms may creep up on you gradually. The common cold is unlikely to lead to any complications or more serious illnesses, while the flu can lead to pneumonia or other infections that require medical attention. 

Treatment

Getting an accurate diagnosis is important to properly treat your illness, whether it is the common cold or the flu. Flu tests often must be done within the first few days of illness, so it’s important that if you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed above to get tested for the flu. 

You can get a flu test at urgent care. If you get a rapid test, you should receive results within about 10-15 minutes of taking the test. If you test positive for the flu, you may be able to receive a shot or other treatment to help treat the flu, relieve your symptoms, and shorten the length of your illness. More importantly, getting treatment will help prevent complications and more serious illnesses. If you don’t have the flu, you can still get treatment for your cold at urgent care, too. This will help you feel better faster and get back to your normal routine.

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Who Needs a Flu Shot? Why Don’t Adults Vaccinate More Than Children?

Flu season is here and you’ve probably seen plenty of signs and commercials encouraging you to receive your flu shot. Despite all of the advertisements each year, many people still choose not to vaccinate, leaving themselves vulnerable to the flu. Let’s take a closer look at who chooses not to vaccinate and understand why that might be. 

Why Children Get Vaccinated More

Children tend to get vaccinated more for multiple reasons. First, they’re at the highest risk out of any group. In fact, children ages 0-4 are more likely than any other group the get the flu. Another reason is because many parents put their child’s health above their own.

They’ll take the time to get their children vaccinated because they don’t want to see them sick, but they fail to do the same for themselves. Children tend to see their pediatrician more frequently than adults see their primary care physician which is yet another reason why they tend to be vaccinated before their parents. 

Should Adults Get Vaccinated too?

Yes, adults should get vaccinated! Over half of the adults in this country opt out of their flu vaccine each year, but it isn’t because they aren’t at risk for the illness. Adults typically come into contact with the flu at their place or work, the grocery store, or even while shaking hands with a friend. Just because you aren’t going to school with a bunch of kids doesn’t mean you won’t come into contact with the flu!

Everybody over the age of 6 months old should receive their flu shot, including elderly people and pregnant women. 

Where to Get Vaccinated

Your local urgent care center is the best place to get vaccinated before peak flu season hits. Urgent care centers are able to offer quick treatment that works with your busy schedule. No appointment is needed, simply come by when you have a few extra minutes and you’ll protected all season long! Urgent care centers accept most major insurance companies and the flu shot is typically covered at little to no cost to you. 

If you have questions about receiving your flu shot or getting one for your child, give us a call today! Our team of flu fighting experts are standing by, ready to help keep you happy and healthy this flu season. No matter your age, your health should always be a top priority!

And make sure that you get vaccinated at First Call Urgent Care for your seasonal flu shots! 

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Places that the flu virus spreads more quickly

The influenza virus can cause flu-related illnesses and other health consequences for millions of people annually. By protecting yourself against the disease, families can ensure they are vaccinated, hygienic, and less likely to get the disease.

A big part of preventing the flu virus is knowing how, and where, the flu virus is likely to spread. Certain publicly shared spaces and environments have a greater chance of increased flu activity versus staying outdoors for prolonged periods of time. This is because the flu passes from host to host more rapidly when people are inside contained spaces. The flu is more likely to pass through direct contact, such as touching hands with an infected patient, or through airborne transmission.

Your child’s schools are more likely to experience increased flu activity than most other places

Younger children between the ages of 6-12 usually have the highest incidences of flu activity and infection than other schools. The result of this is usually children that haven’t quite learned how to stay hygienic are are still learning how to prevent the common cold and flu.

Teachers, school staff, and school nurses do their best to teach children how to stay healthy and safe during flu season. Sometimes, schools will organize special events to help prevent the flu, but it may not be enough.

Additionally, middle and high schools are also likely to see upticks in flu activity since the close proximity of several students can quickly cause a flu outbreak.

Workplaces and offices usually lead to significant flu activity

An office setting or a workplace can also breed flu epidemics and outbreaks if employees don’t stay at home with the flu.

Many employees may feel obligated to continue working even though they show signs of having the flu [link]. When this happens, the flu can travel across desks, countertops, and from direct peer-to-peer interactions.

The flu is attributed to massive setbacks in production and workforce participation since many employees may not be sure if the flu is going around at their office.

Remember to get a flu shot at First Call Urgent Care to stay safe in flu-heavy environments!

As a friendly reminder, First Call Urgent Care provides effective flu shots for patients that are fast, affordable, and accessible flu shots any day of the week!

Simply call in advance or get directions to get your flu shot ASAP! Our walk-in clinic allows patients to get their shots without an appointment.

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How can I tell if my symptoms are the flu?

The flu season is pretty much kicking off at this moment.  As more people stay close together indoors during gatherings, work, and school the flu has a greater chance of spreading from person to person.

The best way to protect against the flu virus is with an updated flu vaccine known as a “flu shot.” Without a flu shot, your chances of getting the flu increase significantly and could lead to a variety of uncomfortable, or even painful, symptoms.

Diagnosing the flu early can help most patients prevent further diseases, treat the disease faster, and ensure that they are ready to coordinate any symptom treatment that they may need. However, the best way for patients to prevent the flu is to first get a flu shot at a nearby urgent care center!

Fever is the first symptom of having the flu for most patients.

A higher-than-normal fever after a few days usually means you’re coming down with a case of the flu. Usually, a fever is the very first sign that you are infected with the flu virus.

Unlike other diseases, the flu usually leads to early onset symptoms after just a day or two, sometimes up to three. In those first two days, a fever is the best indicator of the flu. Record the severity of a strong headache or a potential fever for a day or two and then see a nearby medical provider, like an urgent care center, to coordinate treatment.

Flu symptoms include sneezing, coughing, congestion, and sore throat among others

When the flu has fully spread throughout your body, then you’ll begin to notice some traditional symptoms of the flu such as sneezing, coughing, congestion, sore throat, and general respiratory irritation.

During this time, breathing becomes harder and your body is fatigued as it fights of the influenza virus. Usually, patients will need extended rest or days off in order for their body to completely fight off the flu virus.

In rare cases the flu virus can lead to hospitalizations

Many patients may not fully realize that the flu can especially impact the health and safety of vulnerable individuals, which leads to hospitalizations. Patients that have trouble breathing, asthma, respiratory issues, or auto-immune deficiencies may have more serve symptoms that require intensive hospital care.

To avoid the flu, simply visit First Call Urgent Care to get your flu shot and receive seasonal flu treatment for any potential flu-related illnesses!

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How Much Time, and Money, Does Having the Flu Cost?

Although getting sick with the flu may not feel like a big deal right now, your opinion might change once you actually come down with the illness. Not only are the symptoms very uncomfortable, but they can take you out of your normal routine for days or even a full week. This can affect your productivity at work or school, and you can also lose money on treatment. Here’s what you should expect if you come down with the flu. 

The flu lasts one to two weeks

While many people hope to head back to work or school after a day or two, the truth is that the flu lasts for one to two weeks for most people. In severe cases, it can last even longer than that. Not only are you missing out on important work and school, but during that entire time, you’ll need to spend extra money on products from the drugstore to stay healthy, and you may need to pay for medical treatment as well. 

You may need to use sick days to miss work

When you come down with the flu, call out of work since the virus so contagious. However, this means you’ll need to tap into your sick or personal days to make sure you still get paid. If your company doesn’t offer sick days, you will actually lose money by missing work, which can be devastating. 

Kids may need make-up days from school

If your child gets sick with the flu, chances are they will miss a lot of important learning at school. They may come back and find they are far behind their peers and need to do make-up assignments to catch up. In some cases, if you miss enough school, you’ll need to take extra make-up days on weekends or holidays. 

Getting a flu shot prevents the flu

To avoid missing out on work or school, make sure you get a flu shot during flu season. Flu shots are easy to get through your local urgent care center, clinic, or pharmacy, and are available at affordable pricing. They are particularly important for kids going to school or adults who work in large offices, where illnesses spread quickly. 

Now is the perfect time to get a flu shot, before fall hits and flu season picks up. Visit your local clinic today, and you can make sure that you don’t lose valuable time and money to the flu this year. 

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