Health center gives cold and flu season tips

TROY, Ala. (TROJANVISION) — Leaves are falling, temperatures are cooling down, and allergens are in the air. But, how can you tell the difference between allergies, and a cold?

“Allergies usually are a little bit more mild,” said Troy University Health Center nurse practitioner Jacque Chirico. “You can get all stuffed up, but you’ve got usually a runny nose, it’s not usually colored that much. Watery eyes, a lot of sneezing, things like that. Cold, is a little more congested. Congestion with blowing out stuff that’s got a lot more color to it, thicker, coughs that are deeper, more congested.”

Shortly after the cold weather sets in, usually flu season does too.

“Right now is the time for the flu shot.”

Jacque Chirico

Flu season doesn’t really pick up until the end of December. Why is it important to get the flu shot now?

“You don’t get your flu shot and then have immunity the next day, so you want to take your flu shot now to have immunity the first of January, the end of December when the flu season starts,” says Chirico.

As for where to get your flu shot, you can do it right on campus at the Troy University Health Center.

“It’s easy, simple, I mean literally, it takes one minute to get a flu shot,” Chirico says.

But what about costs?

“Insurances pay for the flu shot, so basically you won’t have any costs,” Chirico says.

She says if you don’t have insurance, the University Health Center will work with you to find a reduced charge. Chirico says the most important thing is to make sure you are taking care of yourself.

“Just making sure you’re getting good sleep and doing all of the healthy habits, and that helps keep your immune system working strong and fighting all this stuff off.”