SATURDAY, Jan. 21, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- The best way for people to protect themselves from the flu is to get vaccinated -- and it's not too late to get a shot, an infectious diseases expert says.
The flu vaccine also protects those who aren't able to get it, including infants younger than 6 months and people with certain allergies and medical conditions, said Dr. Jeffrey Kahn. He is chief of pediatric infectious diseases at UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas.
Those who think it's too late to get vaccinated should reconsider since flu season lasts until spring, Kahn said in a medical center news release.
UT Southwestern outlines other ways people can reduce their risk of getting the flu:
Those who do end up with the flu should visit their doctor, Kahn recommended. There's no cure for the flu, but antiviral drugs can ease flu symptoms if treatment is started early. The drugs are most effective for people who take them within 48 hours of developing symptoms, he explained.
Chest pains or trouble breathing are warning signs of pneumonia, and should be treated by a doctor right away.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides more information on flu prevention.
SOURCE: UT Southwestern Medical Center, news release, January 2017