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HEALTH CARE [Advertorial]
Flu Season: Tips on Healthy Living

This holiday season, get a flu shot and give the gift of health to your family. Gift of Health is supported by grants from The California Endowment and California Community Foundation.

Holi ke Rang (Siliconeer photo)

When you get a flu shot this holiday season, you’re not only decreasing your own risk of getting sick from H1N1, the swine flu. You’re also giving the gift of health to your family, because when you get vaccinated, you’re also protecting your loved ones.

When you get vaccinated, you help build a wall of protection for those you live with, work with, and even sit next to on an airplane.

Since April, the Centers for Disease Control reports, 10,000 Americans have died from the swine flu. Another 213,000 people have been sick enough to be hospitalized.

“It’s important to understand that the vaccine’s not only for you, it’s also for those around you,” says the CDC’s Alan Janssen.

Experts call it “the cocooning effect” because when you get a vaccine for flu — seasonal or H1N1 — you in effect are building an immunity wall for those you come in contact with, especially those you’re closest to. You’re not exposing them through yourself to the virus because you’ve immunized yourself.

The opposite is equally true. When you get infected, you can pass the virus on to those you care about most.

This is especially important for parents of newborn babies, who have little if any immunity to influenza for the first 12 months of life. In addition, infants under six months old cannot be vaccinated. To ensure protection for the baby, immediate household contacts (representing its cocoon) must vaccinate themselves against influenza so they won’t transmit the virus to the baby.

The same is true for those in regular contact with elderly family members with compromised immune systems, the CDC’s Janssen says.

While studies show the vaccine for H1N1 is 97 percent effective, older Americans can benefit from the additional protection of having their family members vaccinated.

The upshot, Janssen says, if we all build a cocoon around ourselves and our families, we will be able to keep the swine flu from spreading further.

“We’re trying to decrease the number of folks who can get influenza by having a vaccination,” he said. “That way you’re preventing it from getting into the community.”

Gift of Health is supported by grants from The California Endowment and California Community Foundation.


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The People's Prime Minister:
A Tribute to Lal Bahadur Shastri

Lal Bahadur Shastri, India’s second prime minister, was a leader in the old, Gandhian mold — soft spoken, unassuming and selfless, yet firmly committed to his principles, writes Ved Prakash Vatuk.

Year 2009:
India Diary

Siliconeer takes stock of the events and developments that impacted India in the past year.

Middle Class Change:
India for Better and Worse

Two lifestyle products that defined Indian middle class existence and aspiration in the ’70s and ’80s will soon cease to exist, writes Siddharth Srivastava.

EDITORIAL: Yesteryear’s Unsung Hero
NEWS DIARY: December 2009
IN REVIEW: Year 2009 in Images
SUBCONTINENT: The Vitamin C Saga
RECIPE: Masala Idli
HEALTH CARE: Flu Season Tips
REAL ESTATE: To Rent or To Buy?
COMMUNITY: Census in Schools
SUBCONTINENT: India’s Defense Imports
COMMUNITY: Immigration Reform
AUTO REVIEW: 2010 Lexus HS 250h
BOLLYWOOD: Film Review: 3 Idiots
TAMIL FILM: Kandhakottai
BUSINESS: News in Brief
COMMUNITY: News Briefs
HOROSCOPE: 2010 Yearly Forecast

2009 IIFA Awards, Macau
A Siliconeer Exclusive Photo Essay

81st Annual Academy Awards
A Siliconeer Exclusive Photo Essay

IIFA Awards 2008
A Siliconeer Exclusive Photo Essay

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