Seasonal flu is a highly infectious illness caused by a flu virus. The virus infects your lungs and upper airways, causing a sudden high temperature and general aches and pains. It is vital you don't underestimate the effects of this virus as it is not the same as getting a cold and it can seriously affect your health.
Seasonal flu vaccination for pregnant women and people in ‘at risk groups’
Anyone can get flu, but some groups are more vulnerable than others. It is strongly recommend that pregnant women and people who are in at risk groups, including children, contact their GP or practice nurse now, to ensure they are given their seasonal flu vaccination.
The flu vaccine is offered to everyone over the age of 65 and younger people in at risk groups, including people with long term conditions, such as, heart disease, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, serious kidney and liver disease.
If you are the parent of a child (over six months) with a long-term condition, speak to your GP about the flu jab. Your child's condition may get worse if they catch flu. Click here to view NHS guidance on which children will be eligible for the flu vaccine.
Guide to flu symptoms and looking after yourself
You can protect yourself by practising good hand hygiene with the ‘catch it, bin it, kill it’ technique. This means carrying tissues, covering coughs and sneezes with a tissue, disposing of the tissue after one use, and cleaning hands as soon as possible with soap and water.
For a guide to flu symptoms and how to look after yourself, visit the NHS Choices website.
For advice on whether you should see your GP or look after yourself at home call your GP or NHS 111.