Got the flu? There’s an app for that.
There are a bunch of flu-related apps you can now download to your smart phones. We haven’t tested any, but those described below are free and seem to offer some useful features.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has a flu app that’s designed for health care providers, but that can be helpful to consumers, too. It includes diagnostic tools and vaccination recommendations, flu news, and information about flu activity across the nation.
The agency also recently challenged techies to take the wealth of info the CDC has online about the flu and develop an app to get the word out to the public. Check out the winners of the Flu App Challenge.
FluF.A.C.T.S. lets you track flu activity in your area, receive free email alerts, check the symptoms, get prevention tips, and learn what to do if you’ve been exposed.
Flu Near You lets you enter your zip code to find and report flu activity near you, plus it has a vaccine finder, so you can find a place nearby to get the flu shot.
If you’re looking to find someone to blame for your flu infection, Facebook has an app: Help my friend gave me the flu, that lets you point out which of your friends passed on the infection. If you don’t have the flu, you can track who is most likely to get you sick so you can avoid them. It may not be particularly scientific or accurate, but it is pretty fun.
On the horizon: believe it or not, an app that converts your smartphone into a thermometer. We’ve got ratings and recommendations of top thermometers.
Read more of our advice on preventing and treating the flu.
And if you need a smartphone, we’ve got you covered: check out our ratings and recommendations.