Morrow Family Medicine September 2016 Newsletter

Do I REALLY Need a Flu Shot?
Influenza Vaccine Facts That Everyone Should Know 

Chalkboard with Flu Season Ahead and mask on it
Do I Have to Get a Flu Shot? 
Every year the Morrow Family Medicine team is asked the same question as fall approaches, "So, do I REALLY need a flu shot?" While yes there are many people who believe that flu shots are unnecessary, these are usually also the same individuals frantically calling us on a Monday morning due to you guessed it...having a case of the flu. But rather than giving you a definitive YES, to this age old question, let us share some facts about the flu and let you decide for yourself.
Flu Facts 
Man in bed with flu
Every year there are more than 3 million cases of the flu (influenza) in the United States. In most circumstances the flu is just a nuisance and causes minor discomfort. However, it can become serious leading to more dangerous secondary infections such as bacterial pneumonia, dehydration; ear and sinus infections. While antibiotics can help with secondary infections, the flu itself being a virus, is not treatable with these medications. You will unfortunately be left having to just ride out the flu's course with over-the-counter medications and rest.  

NOTE: *In some instances individuals in danger of flu complications (such as pregnant women and those with chronic diseases), may be prescribed antiviral drugs such as Tamiflu, Relenza or Rapivab when flu symptoms occur.

flu vaccine
When Should I Get My Shot?
The standard flu season is October to May. Vaccines can be available as early as August. Some people feel waiting a bit later into the flu season is the best course. However, remember that vaccines can become limited (averaging longer wait times) if it is a heavy flu season.
*SPECIAL NOTE - Due to this year's particular influenza strains, it is being advised that for the 2016-2017 flu season persons receive the injectable vaccine rather than the nose spray variety. 

Avoiding the Flu
Girl with flu and umbrella
Most researchers believe the flu is spread by droplets released via sneezing, coughing and talking. The best defense during flu season is to wash your hands regularly. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth as much as possible. Stay away from anyone who has the flu. Last, if you or a family member have the flu, stay home!

Usually flu symptoms come on within a 1-4 day period after exposure. Infected persons can be contagious from one day before symptoms to 5-7 days afterward. 
As reported by the CDC Common Symptoms include:
Buzzfeed 9 Flu Hacks
9 Flu Hacks Video
  • Fever* or feeling feverish/chills
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue (very tired)
  • Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults.

While no vaccine protects one hundred percent against acquiring the flu, they do offer the highest probability of preventing it. More importantly, the flu vaccine can help you avoid severe, even life threatening complications due to influenza. In our book, the facts are proof enough to say...

YES, get your flu shot!
Doctor holding Flu Shots Here sign
Come See Us for Your Flu Shot

As always the Morrow Family Medicine caring team is here for you whether you need an annual physical, chronic condition management or treating the flu. If you are ready to get protected for this flu season, come see Morrow Family Medicine . Contact us at:  or call us at: 770-781-8004.  

We are committed to your health and well-being. We utilize state of the art technology and old fashioned attitudes to care for all our patients.

To learn more about us visit Morrow Family Medicine's LinkedIn page. Morrow Family is the proud recipient of the Best of Forsyth award for 2015 and 2016.

Morrow Family Medicine is now available to see you at two locations:
Cumming - 1400 Northside Forsyth Drive, Suite 200, Cumming, GA 30041
Milton - 12970 Highway 9, Milton, GA 30004
Dr.Cheryl McGowan
We would like to introduce you to Dr. Cheryl McGowan

 About Cheryl McGowan, MD - Family Physician

Dr. McGowan has lived in Alpharetta since 1994. She spent much of her youth in England before returning to the U.S. and graduating from the University of Maryland. Prior to earning her medical degree, Dr. McGowan worked as a hospital-based health educator, medical editor, Senior News Producer at WebMD, and member of the Emergency Communications team at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. She attended the Medical College of Georgia and completed her residency training at Wake Forest Baptist Health in Winston-Salem, NC.

Dr. McGowan has a variety of professional interests including preventive health, patient education, women's health, urgent care and minor surgical procedures. "I enjoy caring for families across the life spectrum, from youngsters to grandparents, and being able to treat many different medical problems. I love Family Medicine's breadth of care and holistic approach to health and wellness. I value getting to know my patients - coordinating with specialists when needed - but being their primary doctor who "knows the whole story.'"

In her free time, Dr. McGowan enjoys traveling, gardening, cooking, losing herself in a good book and spending time with her husband, sons, and two Yorkshire Terriers.

Schedule an appointment today with Dr. Cheryl McGowan and find out why she a great member of the Morrow Family Medicine team.
Communication is the Key
Our job is to take care of you and yours to the best of our ability. The key to being able to perform at that level is communication between doctor and patient. At Morrow Family Medicine, we work to keep the lines of communication open at all times. Toward that goal,  we offer a walk-in time from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m . weekdays . In addition,  our policy is to make ourselves available for sick patients on the day they call, not waiting for an open appointment on some future date. After hours, we are available at all times for any true emergency that might arise. Of course, always call 911 for any life-threatening emergencies.
The Morrow Family Medicine team would like to share our support of the Sawnee-Cumming Optimist Club's " Flags For Education" club fundraiser. Sales will help the Forsyth BYOT Benefit as well. Please consider sponsoring their initiative.

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