AUGUSTA, GA (WFXG) - Flu season is approaching, and you may be considering getting a flu shot.
"Influenza is a viral illness," said Dr. Mark Newton, chairman of emergency medicine at Doctors Hospital in Augusta.
It's passed around fairly easily through contact with someone who has it.
"Which means if you're coughing or sneezing, or even cough or sneeze on your hands, and someone touches something you touched, it can be passed around," Newton said.
With cooler weather comes an increase in your chances of getting the flu.
"People are more congregated indoors," Newton said. "It's a little easier for coughing and sneezing to be transmitted to others."
Flu season used to be considered only in the winter months, but now that has changed.
"Flu season has really gotten to be almost a six-month period to where you need protection and the great news is that there is a way," Newton said. "There are not many illnesses that you can insulate yourself from."
That protection? A flu shot.
"The vaccine is a one time deal," Newton said. "You go in. A few people do have a little redness or soreness in the area. Most people see zero signs of any problems with getting a flu vaccine."
For more information about the flu and flu shots, visit the Center for Disease Control's web site here: http://www.cdc.gov/flu/