Care Xpress- Urgent care

Should I get the Flu Vaccine? (Hint: YES!)

Fall has arrived and soon we will see more people getting sick with the flu. You can help prevent flu-related illness – and missed school and work – by getting a flu vaccine for yourself and your entire family.


Influenza (flu) is a contagious respiratory disease that infects to the nose, throat and lungs. It can lead to serious complications, hospitalization and even death. Some of the complications include pneumonia and bronchitis.

Even healthy people can become sick with the flu and have serious complications. You might be one of the lucky ones that bounce back quickly from the flu, but those around you might not be so lucky. The best way to protect yourself and your family is to get a flu vaccine. Since flu viruses are constantly changing, new vaccines are created every year to target the most likely version. That’s why everyone needs a flu vaccine every season.

Everyone 6 months and older should get the flu vaccine, but it is especially important for these at-risk groups:

  • Children between 6 months and 4 years old

  • People aged 50 years and older

  • People with chronic pulmonary (including asthma), cardiovascular (except hypertension), renal, hepatic, neurologic, hematologic, or metabolic disorders

  • People who are immunosuppressed (including immunosuppression caused by medications or by human immunodeficiency virus)

  • Women who are pregnant

  • Residents of nursing homes

  • People who are morbidly obese

  • Health-care personnel

A common misconception is that a flu vaccine can give you the flu. They cannot. Sometimes there are mild side effects from the vaccine, such as soreness and low fever. These side effects are NOT the flu and are usually mild and short-lived.

Visit your nearest CareXpress location for a flu shot so that you, your family and your co-workers are protected!

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Care Xpress- Urgent care

How to Relieve Sinus and Nasal Pain Caused by Barometric Pressure Change

In the Panhandle of Texas, we often see drastic changes in weather. This can also cause major changes in Barometric Pressure causing sinus and nasal pain for many! Try these 5 steps for relief!

1.) Keep a diary of sinus pain attacks, listing the dates and symptoms, so that you will have a record for your doctors. Write down the weather conditions on those days, including the barometric pressure. Ask your relatives if any type of sinus headaches runs in your family.

2.) Consult an allergist and an ear, nose and throat specialist to find out if other medical problems are making your sinuses reactive to barometric pressure, as recommended by MedlinePlus, a service of the National Institutes of Health. Once these problems are healed or stabilized, your sinus attacks may disappear through treatments such as antibiotics, nasal allergy sprays or surgery.

3.) Visit a neurologist if previous sinus tests show no signs of disease, or if you have been treated for a sinus ailment but you continue to get sinus pain when barometric pressure changes occur. According to a 2007 paper published in the journal “Headache” by Dr. Eric Eross of the Arizona Neurological Institute, you may be suffering from facial migraines, a form of migraine in which the pain and pressure are experienced in your sinuses and nasal passages. If you are diagnosed with facial migraines, you will receive recommendations for over-the-counter and prescription medications to take at the first signal that you are having a sinus pain attack.

4.) Experiment with various methods that may help you with sinus pain caused by barometric pressure changes while you are waiting for your migraine, allergy, painkiller or antibiotic medications to kick in. If you suffer from facial migraines, place a cold compress over your sinuses, lie down in a dark room, and go to sleep. If your sinus attacks stem from other causes, consider lying down and using either a warm or cold compress over your sinuses; going for a walk; sitting in a room with a humidifier; or inhaling steam by sitting in the bathroom with the shower running. If your sinuses swell up and close during sinus attacks, try placing a nasal strip across the bridge of your nose to hold your nasal passages open and use a decongestant nasal inhaler. No technique works for everyone, so keep trying strategies until you find one that works for you.

5.) Try preventive techniques in addition to your physician’s recommended medications. For example, the National Jewish Health Network’s online article and video “Nasal Wash Treatment” recommends mixing table salt and water together and sniffing it up both nostrils every day, thereby removing bacteria, allergens and excess mucous from your nose. Other preventive techniques include giving up smoking, drinking plenty of fluids to thin out your sinus mucous and keeping a humidifier in your bedroom.