LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - It's about that time to roll up your sleeves for a certain vaccine. The flu season is approaching, and health experts say October is the right time to get the preventative shot.
According to predictions out of Australia the 2017 to 2018 flu season is expected to be worse than previous years, and this could directly affect the U.S.
Here in Lufkin, Robert Standerford said Tuesday that they have already seen some cases of the flu in East Texas which is an unusually early start to the normal Flu season.
"This year was weird because we saw it at the end of August. I had four confirmed flu a's at the end of August and beginning of September," Standerford said.
Recent studies show America's flu season patterns are reflected by what the Southern Hemisphere experienced the previous season. With Australia's spike being two and a half times more infectious last year, doctors are preparing for the worst.
However, Standerford said predictions can differ.
"Trying to predict the flu is kind of like trying to predict hurricanes, you can expect something to take place and then it does not," Standerford said.
Still the Urgent Doc team said the best way to protect yourself is to get a flu shot because the airborne virus is contagious.
If you're planning to travel for the holidays,sources say you're at a higher risk of catching the flu, and it's recommended to get your immunization before the end of October.
Local experts stress that getting a flu shot is a responsibility to fellow citizens. They say children and the elderly are especially at risk.