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Influenza (Seasonal Flu) - What Increases Your Risk

Anyone exposed to an influenza (flu) virus can become infected. These viruses are contagious and spread easily among people in groups, such as in nursing homes, hospitals, shelters, schools, and day cares. Working, visiting, or living in any of these areas increases your risk of getting the flu.

The risk of having severe symptoms and complications is higher for:

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A hacking cough, a throbbing head, a sore throat, and a nose so stuffed it feels as if you'll never breathe free and clear again. You've got a cold -- or maybe even the flu -- and all you want to do is crawl in bed and sleep. Until you get there. That's when you realize your symptoms are turning any chance for a solid night's rest into the impossible dream. "It's true that many cold and flu symptoms seem to get worse at night, and they can interfere with sleep just at the critical time when...

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  • Children younger than 2 years of age.
  • Adults age 65 and older.
  • Pregnant women.
  • People who have chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), other lung diseases, or heart failure.
  • People who have a medical condition (such as acquired immunodeficiency syndrome [AIDS]) or who are using a medicine that impairs the immune system.
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WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: January 15, 2013
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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