Japan may have entered flu season, Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare announced earlier today. Infectious Disease Surveillance Cneter (IDSC) closely monitors the flu patients at 4,800 medical institutions in Japan. The weekly patient report of December 19, 2010 has exceeded one patient per institution (1.41 patients). IDSC recognize the "one patient prt institution" as "the beginning of flu season".
The most number of patients per institution are led by Saga (8.26), Nagasaki (7.36), then Hokkaido (5.87) and Oita (2.55). Also the flu patients in Tokyo is increasing. Once the flu season hits Tokyo, it could spread to the rest of Japan easily.
If the number is above 10 patients per institution, the local government will issue the "flu warning".
But as long as you are prepared, you should not be the problem.
Get a flu shot
If you have Japanese medical insurance, get a flu shot at the local medical clunic by the end of the year. It will take a week or two to develop the immune system inside of your body. It will be too late to get a flu shot after the flu spread Japan.
Also, if you are planning to get a flu shot outside Japan, you may have to be careful.
Flu has different kind of viruses. Every year, vaccine companies predict which flu becomes the trend of the year according to the region.
If you are planning to get the flu shot outside Japan, make sure to tell your doctor that you are coming to Japan. According to IDSC, Hong Kong Type-A and new H1N1 Virus could be the trend of this year in Japan.
Wash your hands & garggle your mouth
In Japan, people have been told since infants to wash their hands frequently. They encourage to watch their hand soon after you go back home, or before you eat. This will prevent from the virus entering your body.
According to the medical experts, gargling is also very effective excercise against flu. Whenever you come back from outdoor, we recommend to garggle.
Clean air, warn tempreture, and more humid
Flu virus likes cold and dry environment. The winter weather in Japan is the perfect condition for the flu virus to spread. It's the best to create the hostile environment which is warn and a little humid. Also make sure to open the window occasionary to exchange the clean air.
Once you are prepared for the flu virus, enjoy the holiday season! Winter Japan awaits you.