With entire schools shutting down, and sick days being used up, I think everyone in Idaho has felt the effects of the flu season, which has been described around the country as "severe." Here in Idaho, there are on-average about 23-flu-related deaths during the flu season (Oct-April). Unfortunately, last year, there were 72 deaths with the flu virus to blame.

If you're thinking, "eh, I got the flu shot, I'll be good!" Think again. according to the Idaho Statesman, at its best, the flu vaccine is only about 40-50 percent effective. This year, the flu vaccine could be only 30 percent effective according to a report from National Geographic. What's even more scary is that in Australia it was only 10 percent effective. YIKES!

Here are some tips from the Idaho Statesman on how to keep you and your family safe:

  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing to prevent infecting other people. Avoid people who appear to be sick.
  • Stay home from work or school when you're sick so you don't infect others.
  • Wash your hands frequently, especially after being in public. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth until you have washed your hands.
  • Get plenty of rest, drink plenty of liquids, eat nutritious foods and take part in physical activity to stay healthy.