Not only is 2018 the scene of one of the worst flu outbreaks of the past decade; it’s also the 100th anniversary of the worst flu epidemic in modern history.
The 1918 flu epidemic killed more than 50 million people. View photographs and documents about the 1918 epidemic, which started in spring of that year and reached the full extent of suffering that fall, from the National Archives and Records Administration.
What about 2018? This map of flu activity in the United States, from the Centers for Disease Control, shows that the flu is widespread in almost every state. The CDC provides a regular situation update, with statistics about the number of doctor visits related to flu, mortality from flu, and more. FluView provides the most current CDC data on the current state of the disease in the United States.
How can you avoid the flu? In addition to getting the flu vaccine, the CDC recommends certain precautions to prevent coming down with the flu. Besides avoiding contact with sick people, wash your hands often or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer; avoid touching the eyes, nose and mouth; and stay home if you develop flu-like symptoms until you have gone at least 24 hours without a fever (without use of a fever-reducing medicine such as aspirin or ibuprofen).
Stay well this winter and spring!