Midland Sees Signs of the Flu

By Wyatt Goolsby
NewsWest 9

It's only the beginning of October, Flu Season is still weeks away, but one area doctor has already reported cases here in the basin. NewsWest 9 spoke with the doctor about what he's seen, and how you can keep yourself, and family from catching the bug.

"People really do need to get their flu shot. Now is the time to do it, because sometimes the flu, the time frame in which the flu starts is variable year to year. And sometimes it can be in November, sometimes it can be in October, and interesting, we've already got documented flu in the community. Now it may have been a sporadic case or too, but it's out there, and it could be we are already going to have an early flu season possibly," said Dr. John D. Bray.

That's right. Doctors said now is the time to get up date on your shots. Some Midland residents were already out, and getting their shots Tuesday at a couple of clinics. Dr. Bray said it helps to get those shots early.

"Because, it takes about two weeks for your immunity to build up. So if we were to have an outbreak, a significant outbreak, and you haven't had your flu shots, running down to the doctor's office to get a flu shot is a good idea, but you may be a little late," explained Dr. Bray.

And if you do end up coming down with the flu, you'll know it.

"The flu is not a cold. When you get the real flu, you usually know it. You typically have a really high fever, 102, 103, 103 and a half, you feel bad, and you have muscle aches, and you know it's not a cold. I mean, you are significantly sicker, than a typical cold," said Dr. Bray. "If you develop those kinds of symptoms, you need to get to the doctor pronto."

But luckily, there is medicine that can help.

"There are flu medicines that will work, it is very important that you get those started as early as possible, preferably the first 24 hours after you come down with the flu," said Dr. Bray.

The bottom line - fighting sicknesses early is the way to go.

Doctors add it's also important if you have sinus problems or asthma to get serious about seeing your doctor, taking medicine, getting medicine refilled. With signs of the flu out there, higher pollen counts because of more rain this summer, and more cold weather in the fall, now is the time to make sure you have seen your doctor.