Get the Facts About the Flu Vaccine
Flu season is almost upon us! Although the flu is a temporary illness, it is an extremely unpleasant one that can leave even the healthiest people feeling miserable, not to mention it can easily spread throughout your household to loved ones. The flu virus can cause severe complications such as pneumonia and can make serious health conditions much worse.
Here’s what you should know about the flu shot to keep yourself and your family protected!
How safe are flu shots?
Flu vaccines are the best safety measure an individual can take to decrease their chances of contracting the flu virus and passing it to someone else. The flu vaccine is also safe for children, the CDC suggests that anyone 6 months old and above should get a flu shot annually.
What are the most common side effects of the flu vaccine?
The side effects associated with the flu shot are usually mild and subside naturally in a matter of days.
Commonly reported side effects from the flu shot include:
- Pain or tenderness around the injection site
- Muscle aches
Severe side effects that could be warning signs of an allergic reaction are:
- Wheezing or difficulty breathing
- Swollen lips or eyes
- Rapid heartbeat
Can I get the flu shot while pregnant?
Yes, the flu shot is safe during pregnancy. It is important to note that pregnant women are only recommended to get the flu shot, not the live attenuated influenza vaccine which is a weakened version that comes in the form of a nasal spray. Since the live attenuated influenza vaccine (LAIV) is intended for individuals who are not pregnant, women who have given birth, including those who are breastfeeding, can choose to get either vaccine type.
Can the flu shot and COVID-19 vaccine be given in the same time frame?
Yes, it is now deemed perfectly safe by the CDC to get other vaccines the same time a COVID-19 vaccine is received, and you do not have to wait 14 days in between vaccinations anymore.
Do I really need the flu shot every year?
Yes, the flu vaccine should always be received every year. This is due to the protection that decreases in the immune system over a period of time and the continual changing of flu viruses each year. Flu vaccines are reviewed and adjusted yearly to make sure they are effective for the next flu season. It is generally preferred that the flu vaccine be received before the end of October, however it can still be received later. It typically takes about two weeks for antibodies to develop after flu vaccination, so it is key to get vaccinated sooner than later to give your body enough time to build protection before the flu virus begins to spread locally. For maximum protection, anyone 6 months and older is recommended to receive a flu vaccine annually.
When will flu shots be available?
We encourage you to get your flu shot during your annual physical! Text the number for your location below to schedule your appointment:
- West Plano Medical Village (469) 382-4891
- Independence Medical Village (469) 382-3548
- McKinney Medical Village (469) 382-3717
- Frisco Medical Village (469) 382 - 3415
Alternatively, the flu vaccine is often available at many local pharmacies for drug stores.
Have you been feeling under the weather lately? Click here to schedule an appointment with your primary care provider today.