JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - It's the first day of fall, and exposure to cooler temperatures increases the risk of catching the common cold, or worse - the flu.
University of Arkansas assistant professor of medicine Dr. Shane Speights recommends getting the vaccine as early as possible. "The normal flu season starts sometime in October and peaks usually about January or February."
Dr. Speights gives several facts to dispel the common myths about the flu and flu vaccines.
- The single best way to protect yourself from the virus is to get vaccinated each year.
- Pregnant women can get vaccinated.
- Cold weather does not cause the flu.
- People cannot get the flu from the vaccine.
- One vaccination a year is enough.
- It is safe to get vaccinated at local drug stores in addition to clinics and physicians' offices.
Go to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention web site for more information about the influenza virus.