Chris lives in Ottawa and shares his two-storey house in the suburbs with his golden retriever. He retired two years ago, and the house feels a bit empty now that his two sons are away at university for most of the year. He has put on a few pounds since retiring — he loves to cook! — but has recently begun a regular gym routine. He has been eating a healthier diet since being diagnosed with diabetes two years ago. Chris is very social and hosts a monthly book club with some of his former colleagues. It’s a great excuse to bake and barbecue.
Nearly half of Canadians over 50 have at least one high-risk condition that could make the flu worse: obesity, diabetes, asthma, heart disease, COPD, cancer or stroke.
Chris got into the habit of getting an annual flu shot when he was teaching. He knows how quickly the flu can spread.
Chris got vaccinated against COVID-19 and wrongly assumes those shots protect him against the flu as well.
Chris has a busy volunteer schedule. He spends the morning at the local elementary school once a week, doing one-on-one reading with children in grades 2 and 3. Sometimes, the principal, a longtime friend, will call to ask him to help out at special events such as the annual science fair.
Did you know: The things Canadians did to prevent COVID-19 also worked for the flu — the 2019-2020 flu season ended abruptly because of masks and physical distancing, and the 2020-2021 season never really took off.
In Canada, an average of 12,200 people are hospitalized and 3,500 die from the flu each year.
Chris gets to the gym three days a week. He times his treadmill sessions to coincide with Montreal Canadiens games. Watching his favourite team on the gym’s big screen makes the workout go faster!
Know your symptoms: Flu symptoms can include fever, headache, muscle pain, runny nose, sore throat, extreme tiredness and cough. Children may also experience nausea, vomiting or diarrhea. Although other infections may have similar symptoms, those due to the flu tend to be worse.
The time from when a person is infected with flu to when symptoms begin is usually about 2 days, but can range from 1 to 4 days.
Chris has always been an avid crime-fiction reader, and now that he’s retired, he can combine his love books with his love of hosting. He hosts every second meeting of his book club, a gathering of recently retired friends from around the neighbourhood. He creates a snacks menu based on their monthly book.
Is it a coincidence that the last few books the group has chosen are set in the southern States so Chris can show off his Memphis-style ribs, sweet molasses baked beans and mac and cheese?
The World Health Organization’s Global Influenza Surveillance and Response System continuously monitors the influenza viruses circulating in humans and updates the composition of influenza vaccines twice a year.
Influenza is a serious global health threat that impacts all countries: every year, there are an estimated 1 billion cases, 3-5 million severe cases, and between 300,000 and 650,000 deaths worldwide.
On Thursdays, Chris is a volunteer driver with Meals on Wheels, delivering healthy lunches and dinners to seniors with chronic illnesses and disabilities, allowing them to remain in their homes. He enjoys chatting and hearing their stories. Chris feels good that his weekly check-ins provide peace of mind for the seniors’ loved ones.
Did You Know: The flu vaccine has benefited millions of Canadians since 1946.
#WeDidIt #BetterMatch #GetVaccinated
Some people may be able to infect others beginning 1 day before symptoms develop and up to 5 to 7 days after becoming sick.
It’s always busy at Christmas when Chris’s two sons come home from university. Their friends congregate (everyone loves a good cook), and the house is bustling from mid-December through early January. His younger sister, who lives just outside Hamilton with her husband and two teens, also arrives with her family in the week before Christmas. Chris loves having a house full of family.
You cannot catch the flu from the vaccine. The viruses in the flu vaccine are either killed or weakened.
#gettheshot #flufacts #staysafe
Chris and his sons bond over quiz night at the local pub. They always make time to go to at least one trivia night while the boys are back for the holidays. Chris knows the answers to even the most obscure questions. Anyone else know what the first hockey pucks were made of?
Make it a habit to wash your hands every time you return home after a trip outside the house. The flu virus can survive up to 48 hours on surfaces like door handles and keyboards.
The results are updated based on interactions with this choose-your-own-adventure activity and do not reflect medically accurate statistics. Statistics shown throughout the adventure are based on fact. See more on our sources page.