Somehow my house has exploded with germs in the past few days. Literally everyone in the family has come down with a cold, and my 2-year-old has been busy throwing up all over himself and his high chair. (Need I remind anyone how many nooks and crannies high chairs often have? UGH.) Although we’re all feeling pretty dismal, I’m trying to look on the bright side and think about just how much sicker we all could be—and am taking the opportunity in between sneezes to dial our pediatrician and my primary care doctor right now to schedule our flu shots, so that we can try to avoid worse bouts of illness this winter.
Indeed, a recent survey conducted by Walgreens found that during last year’s flu season caused lots of upheaval, including:
- 32 million missed school days—which ultimately translates to missed work days as well (34% of respondents would need to make alternative childcare arrangements if their child came down with the flu, and 40% would need to take time off from work to take care of their sick child)
- 100 million missed work days
- nearly 5 million holiday celebrations missed
- more than 3 million vacations canceled or interrupted
- countless marital spats as wives try to contend with “very annoying” sick husbands (I'm joking here...kind of)
According to the CDC, on average 13 percent of the U.S. population gets the flu every year, with active flu seasons seeing closer to 20 percent, or more than 62 million Americans.
Have you and your family already gotten your flu shots this year? If not, are you planning to get them?