HAZARD, Ky (WYMT) - Sunday marks the first day of fall and while many folks are excited for cooler temperatures and changing leaves, that also means we will be one step closer to flu season.
With that in mind, health officials said they want to make sure you stay healthy this year.
So before you head to the doctor for fever, sneezing and all over aches, health officials want to remind you about the flu vaccination.
"It is different every year so we always want people to be prepared early before we know the flu is going to hit. Some years it will start in November. Some years it will start in February," said Feltner.
Flu shots are already available at the Primary Care Center in Hazard and Feltner recommends them.
"For the elderly population or if you have chronic illnesses or the young, really young, it can cause you major health problems. We always want to make sure that those people are taken care of," said Feltner.
For anyone that works in public places, they are not immune from sickness.
That is why health care professionals advise people to use things like hand sanitizer to stop the spread of germs.
"Hand washing is always the greatest but when that is not available, we will definitely recommend the hand sanitizer," said Feltner.
But at the Perry County Health Department, regional epidemiologist Rudrani Ghosh stresses that to really protect yourself you need that shot in the arm.
"The single best way to prevent seasonal flu is to get vaccinated. Vaccination is very important," said Ghosh.
She added there is a simple reason for that.
"It is always better to prevent than to be sick," said Ghosh.
Flu season starts in November and usually runs until March.
Flu shots are also available at all the Kentucky River District's health departments.
Here are some additional tips from the Center for Disease Control or CDC on how to keep your family healthy:
1. Stay away from people that are sick
2. If you are sick, stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone
3. Wash you hands often with soap and warm water
4. Try not to touch your nose, mouth or eyes
5. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze