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Why should you track flu outbreaks in this flu season?



  Tracking the Flu

Tracking flu activity in your area can help keep you from getting sick.


Yuri Arcur's peopleimages.com/Getty Images

If you've ever had the flu, you know how bad the symptoms can be. From sore throat, cough, pain, chills and high fever – it's no fun and can lead to more serious problems, even death in severe cases. In fact, the CDC estimates that from October 2018 to May 2019, 37.4 to 42.9 million flu illnesses were reported and between 36,400 and 61,200 people died from the flu.

Read more: Where to Get a Flu Shot this Season

If these numbers are not enough to get a flu shot, just talk to someone who had a flu last year and he'll probably tell you that he wishes he had the shot.

Taking a flu shot is a way to protect yourself, and you can also prevent exposure by avoiding outbreaks by tracking flu activity in areas where you live or visit. Read on to learn more about why you should find the flu and how to do it.

Why you should find the flu

There are several reasons why you should find the flu activity, especially those who know you if it is active in your area. If this is the case, you should be sure to get vaccinated to avoid the risk of illness.

According to Dr. Amesh Adalja, a senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security and an infectious disease expert, may also get you vaccinated sooner if you know there's a flu in your area. "The detection of the flu is helpful to the general public planning when to vaccinate it, possibly delaying it, and knowing that flu activities are occurring near their location can cause them to vaccinate themselves leave, "Adalja told CNET.

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Influenza vaccination is one of the most effective ways to reduce the risk of flu.


/ Getty Images

In addition, Adalja said that tracking the flu is important for organizers, educators, or people working in schools and event planners, as certain events and gatherings may not be ideal during a serious outburst in a community.

In an area with outbreaks it is important to be vaccinated and to practice good hygiene (frequent hand washing). For symptoms, it is important to seek an examination, especially if you have incessant fever, are short of breath, pregnant or at risk of flu complications from existing medical problems, "said Adalja.

Again, one of the best ways to actively prevent the flu is through vaccination, but if you are looking for other ways to prevent it Tracking can help This is especially important for people who can not be vaccinated or who have a weakened immune system.

Tracking the Flu

Several websites and apps offer flu tracking services that help you determine where the flu is Some websites also provide forecasts or "risk assessments" for your region in the future. Most of these sites are based on data collected by official health professionals, but some (like the flu in your area) rely on crowdsourcing and you can report your own symptoms directly if you wish.

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Screenshot by Mercey Livingston / CNET

Flu Everyday Card

You can enter your zip code on the Flu Everyday Card. The system generates a risk of gripping for your location and forecasts for the coming season. The map indicates whether your region will be considered moderate or severe next month.

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Screenshot of Mercey Livingston / CNET

Flu Near You

Flu in your area displays a map of areas experiencing flu activity due to symptoms reported by the user and reports from the CDC. You can report your own symptoms (even if you are not sure if it is a gripped diagnosis) so that the website can track the data in real time. You can also see how average flu activity has been across the country for the past seven days.

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<h3>  Weekly CDC Flu Card <br /></h3>
<p>  The CDC Flu Card displays the number of reported cases and flu activity in each state (Note: the card has not been updated for the 2019-2020 flu season). The CDC updates weekly reports during the flu season and also compares current trends with previous flu seasons. </p>
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Sickweather

Sickweather is an app based on "Social Media Forecasting" to collect data on where influenza is present in metropolitan areas. The app then assesses the level of risk in your area and can predict future trends.

Note that Sickweather uses crowdsourcing and social media to make predictions. However, according to the website, the data is "regularly correlated and validated with available data from the Centers for Disease Control and Disease Control (CDC)".

Read more: In the USA, a flu vaccine developed by AI is being tested


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