Ask The Nurse; Why Should I Get The Flu Vaccine?

October 2, 2019

Flu is caused by a virus and is spread rapidly by coughing, sneezing and close contact. Anyone can get the flu. It strikes suddenly and can last for several days. The symptoms may vary. They may include: fever, chills, sore throat, muscle aches, fatigue, cough, headache, and runny or stuffy nose. Flu can also lead to pneumonia or blood infections. If you have heart or lung disease, the flu can make it worse.

The vaccine can: keep you from getting the flu, make the flu less severe if you do get it, or keep you from spreading it to your family. The vaccine can take about two weeks for protection to develop.

DO NOT get the vaccine if you have ever had a life threatening allergic reaction after a dose of the vaccine. Some of the vaccines contain a small amount of egg protein. So do not take it if you ever had Guilain Barr’e syndrome. There is always a chance for reactions to the vaccine. There is always a chance of minor symptoms from the vaccine but they should only last 1-2 days.

FYI: There is no live virus in the vaccine. They cannot cause the flu. It is usually okay to get the vaccine when you have a mild illness, but may wait until you feel better. The flu is more dangerous for infants, young children and people over age 65.