The best way to prevent seasonal Flu is by getting vaccinated each year.
Influenza (Flu) is a contagious respiratory illness. It can cause mild to severe illness. Sometimes flu can result in hospitalization or death. Some people, such as the elderly, young children, and people with certain health conditions, are at higher risk of flu complications.
What is Flu, and why is it such a big deal?
Flu (Influenza) is a potentially severe disease that can lead to hospitalization and sometimes death. Every flu season is different. Flu infections can affect each person differently, but millions of people get it every year.
How is the Flu spread?
The Flu travels through the air in droplets when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks. You can inhale the droplets directly, or you can pick up the germs from an object and then transfer them to your eyes, nose, or mouth. People with Flu can spread it to others up to about six feet away.
What is the best way to prevent seasonal Flu?
Getting a seasonal flu vaccine is the best way to protect yourself against the Flu. Vaccination has been shown to reduce the risk of flu illnesses, hospitalizations, and even the threat of flu-related death in children.
When is the best time to get a seasonal Flu vaccine?
You should get your flu vaccine before seasonal flu viruses begin to spread in your community. It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop and protect against Flu. Make plans to get vaccinated early in Fall before flu season begins. CDC recommends you get a flu vaccine by the end of October. Children (ages 6 months to 8 years) need two doses to be protected should start the vaccination process sooner because the doses need to be given at least four weeks apart.
Will getting the Flu vaccine cause me to get the Flu?
No. Getting the flu vaccine cannot cause you to get the Flu. Flu shots are made in two ways: the vaccine is made either with viruses that have been killed (inactivated) or with proteins from a flu vaccine virus (which is the case for recombinant influenza vaccine). Nasal spray vaccines use weakened live flu viruses and cannot cause flu illness. The weakened viruses are cold-adapted, which means they only cause infection at the cooler temperatures found within the nose. The viruses cannot infect the lungs or other areas where warmer temperatures exist.
While a flu vaccine cannot give you the Flu, different side effects may be associated with getting a flu vaccine. These side effects are mild and short-lasting, especially when compared to symptoms of a bad case of Flu.
Can I still get the Flu even if I get the Flu vaccine?
Yes. You can still get sick with Flu even if you are vaccinated. You may have been exposed to it shortly before getting vaccinated or while your body is developing antibodies. There are many different flu viruses, so you may get exposed to a flu virus that was not included in the seasonal flu vaccine.
Unfortunately, some people still become infected with a flu virus a flu vaccine is designed to protect against, despite getting vaccinated. The protection provided by flu vaccination can vary, based in part on the health and age of the person getting vaccinated. In general, a flu vaccine works best among healthy younger adults and older children. Some older people and people with certain chronic illnesses may develop less immunity after vaccination. Flu vaccination is not perfect, but it is the best way to protect against the seasonal flu.
Contact EPIC Health today and schedule an appointment and get seasonal flu vaccines for your entire family today. Our team will look at your health, age, medical history, and allergies to suggest the vaccination that will work best for you. At EPIC, the whole family can even come at the same time to make it easy for you!