Posted on October 15, 2019 by dragonspitapothecary
As this season rolls into full bloom we notice not only the changes in temperature, how we feel emotionally and the tidings of harvest we also notice our health. We notice how our body feels in these changes and how our energy is impacted by what is occurring around us. We notice summer tans fading and our body feeling cooler, perhaps more energetic or relaxed, more hungry and sleepy. We notice our skin feeling drier and cooler to the touch. Our hair becoming more manageable with less humidity in the air. Yes, Fall has a way of bringing to our forefront our body and the changes it too is going through during this time.
We live in an area where the time changes in Spring and Fall. I have a hard time when there is less daylight and it greatly impacts my energy and mood. I’m more tired, less energetic and less interested in moving. Yet I notice things about my body and its health that need my attention during this time of year. It is craving movement, nourishment and rest on a new level than it was just a short while ago in Summer. I also notice changes in my family’s needs that are similar. Our bodies are changing in alignment with the season and sometimes our bodies are not able to process those changes smoothly so we end up ill. These needs are louder in calling my attention especially when one of us starts to not feel well.
We are more likely to get sick in the Fall and Winter due to the colder temperatures and close confines to one another indoors. As soon as school starts there is an onslaught of runny noses, illness and germs that we pass to one another leaving everyone in the classroom and home ill for weeks on end. Then there are just normal seasonal illnesses that are more prevalent this time of year like sinus infections and flu. All of these things are preventable and controllable if we are prepared for these changes and protected against exposures to them.
The flu season is from approximately September through March each year depending on weather and regions you live. It is called the flu season because these are the times of year we are most susceptible to “catching” the flu and where we are most at risk for it. The flu is a virus that can be passed person to person through air and surfaces. It is a serious illness for everyone, especially small children, pregnant women and the elderly.
I won’t challenge anyone’s right or opinion on flu shots because ultimately you need to make a decision that is right for your family and I won’t go against anyone’s approach for doing that. I will share however that my family and I haven’t had a flu shot for years. I stopped getting one the minute it was no longer required for my job in healthcare. I have also been known to challenge my employers on the validity of requiring a flu shot especially in years where it was known to not be effective or caused other problems, including death. Instead, we have found other ways to protect ourselves that have, I believe, left us better protected ultimately. Again, this is the position we have taken in our family that is the right decision for us and each family must make that decision.
Here’s what I know based on my 30 plus career in healthcare.
The flu shot does not protect against the flu.
There is no cure for the flu either if you get it.
You can still get it if you have a flu shot
Many report feeling ill a week or two after receiving the flu shot
This shot introduces the bacteria of flu, a strain of it based on what scientist believe is the most prevalent possible for that year. Bottom line is this is a guess based on their data for the type of flu and there is no full guarantee they are right or that you may not get another strain of flu. This bacteria is pumped into your body and challenges your body to produce antibodies to fight against it. The theory is if we have these antibodies and are exposed to that flu strain or ones similar to it we are less likely to get the flu. Sometimes this works and sometimes it doesn’t. Sometimes that shot causes other severe problems in addition to not protecting against the flu. It is an option though if you believe this is right for you and your family but please know the risks and side effects before deciding.
The best course of protection against the flu, and this is thoroughly described by the CDC and every single family family doctor and pediatrician practicing today, is to wash your hands frequently. That’s it. Use soap and water and wash your hands as often as you can. So instead of voluntarily filling our bodies with a bacteria that it may not be able to fight, simply wash your hands!
Other great tips to protect against the flu:
Limit exposure to those who are ill
If you are ill, stay home, especially if you have a fever
Keep commonly touched surfaces cleaned
Don't touch a baby unless it's yours
Fighting Germs, Bacteria and Viruses
How you kill germs and bacteria also matters during this time because some of the chemicals in products can cause other problems including bloody noses, irritations to the skin and eyes and decreased immunity health due to the chemicals. Several diseases have been linked to long term chemical exposure in harsh household cleaners including cancers, respiratory diseases and more.