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DOH-Hernando reminds you to take precautions this flu season

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Hernando, Fla. -  In Florida and throughout the U.S., flu activity is on the rise. In Hernando County, we are currently seeing moderate flu activity. DOH-Hernando is urging residents to get your flu vaccine now if you have not already. There are still weeks of flu activity to come. It is not too late to get your flu vaccine. The flu vaccine is safe, and recommended for everyone six months and older, including pregnant women. Flu vaccines can vary in effectiveness from season to season, but they continue to be the best way to prevent influenza infection and serious influenza complications. To locate a flu shot near you, contact your health care provider or use the Department of Health's flu shot locator: www.flhealth.gov/findaflushot If you are ill If you become ill with flu-like symptoms, contact your health care provider as soon as possible. Your health care provider can prescribe antiviral treatment if appropriate. Treatment is most effective when started within 48 hours, so calling as soon as you become ill is important, especially if you or your loved one is at a higher risk for complications: children younger than 5, adults over the age of 65, pregnant women, and those with underlying medical conditions. Stay home from work and keep children home from school or daycare when sick to help prevent spreading the flu to others. It is also essential to practice good hygiene by properly and frequently washing your hands. Make it a habit to clean and disinfect commonly used surfaces in your home, school or office. You can take additional steps to ward off the flu by coughing or sneezing into a tissue or your elbow and avoiding touching your face. Visit FluFreeFlorida.com for more information on how you can be a part of #FluFreeFlorida. Visit www.floridahealth.gov/floridaflu for more information on influenza and influenza-like illness in Florida.

The Florida Department of Health in Hernando County is encouraging everyone to include health in their holiday activities this year by joining the 2017 Eat Smart, Move More: Maintain, Don’t Gain! Holiday Challenge.

Many Americans gain between one and five pounds each holiday season. While it might not sound like much, most people never manage to lose those extra pounds. The Maintain, Don’t Gain! Holiday Challenge is a free seven-week, email-based campaign to help participants maintain their weight through the holiday season.

Healthiest Weight Florida, in partnership with North Carolina State University, has been promoting and participating in the Maintain Don’t Gain Holiday Challenge for the past three years. Last year's Holiday Challenge was the biggest and best yet with over 13,500 participants from across the country. The challenge runs through December 31. Join below for tips, tricks and ideas to help maintain your weight throughout the holiday season. HAPPY HOLIDAYS!!

For more information and to register for the 2017 Eat Smart, Move More, Maintain, Don’t Gain! Holiday Challenge click or tap this link.