When Can You Get The Flu Vaccine After Recovering From Covid
Ian Mackay, a virologist at the University of Queensland, says you can get the vaccine if you’ve recovered from the virus, but it’s best to wait if you’ve still got severe symptoms so as to not “fire up an already fired-up immune system”.
“So the usual thing with vaccination is if you’ve got any signs or symptoms or you’re ill you’ve got a fever or anything like that don’t get the vaccine at that particular time,” he said.
If you’re feeling fine, however, you’re good to go straight away.
“Once you’re better, and once you’re out of isolation, you can go and have your flu vaccine safely,” Maria Boulton from AMA Queensland says.
Why Do People Still Get The Flu When They Get A Flu Shot
There are several reasons a person may get sick after receiving a flu shot.
Some people may think that they have the flu when they are ill due to a different viral or bacterial infection. This is because many flu symptoms are similar to those of the common cold, which can also occur during flu season.
It takes about 2 weeks for a person to develop immunity to the flu after receiving a flu shot. During this time, it is possible that a person could be exposed to the flu virus and become sick.
The flu vaccine represents researchers best predictions about which flu virus strains will be most prevalent for that year. However, a person can still come into contact with a strain of flu virus that they are not immunized against.
But If Youre Really Ill Hold Off
If youve got a high fever or more moderate symptoms, its probably best to reschedule. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention notes that there isnt actually any data to suggest that being really sick when you get vaccinated puts you at greater risk of serious complications or hampers your immune response. But it does encourage delaying immunization until youre feeling better.
Again, part of that has to do with other people. You shouldnt be standing in a vaccine line or out in public if youre really ill and potentially contagious, even if youre not sick with COVID-19. Rest up, see your doctor if necessary, and make an appointment for when youre feeling better.
Recommended Reading: Flu Shot High Dose Vs Regular
Headache And Other Aches And Pains
After your shot, you might have headaches or some achiness and pain in the muscles throughout your body. This also usually happens on the first day and goes away within two days. Taking pain relievers can help ease your discomfort.
Its controversial whether its safe to take acetaminophen or ibuprofen to treat these vaccine side effects.
Some research suggests that these medications might change or decrease how your body responds to the vaccine. One study involving children found that taking acetaminophen or ibuprofen didnt reduce the bodys response to the flu vaccine.
Other research is mixed. Its still unclear whether these medications should be avoided.
/7can You Get A Vaccine Shot If You Have A Cold Or Fever
Vaccination drives have begun all across the country, with healthcare workers lining up to get the first doses of the coronavirus vaccines, Covaxin and Covishield.
Globally, too, there’s a lot of zeal and enthusiasm amongst people registered to get the vaccine in the earliest of timeframe-which is also a way of achieving herd immunity.
Right now, while there are no limitations as to what may prevent a person from getting vaccinated, there are some precautionary measures which people have been asked to follow before their turn comes up- being well-rested, educated and safeguard immunity being some basic ones.
Read Also: Symptoms Of Cold Flu Or Sinus Infection
Can I Drink Alcohol After My Flu Shot Or While Im Taking Flu Medications
Theres no exact rule for when you can drink alcohol after getting the flu shot or taking flu medications. But its best to wait until you have finished your treatment and are feeling back to normal. And if you experience any side effects from the flu shot, its a good idea to avoid alcohol until all side effects are gone.
You Have An Unrelated Case Of The Flu
The vaccine can take up to two weeks to become effective after you receive it. If you come down with the flu in that period, it’s likely that you were already exposed to the virus before receiving your shot. You didn’t get the flu from the shot.
As well, the strains of flu included in the flu shot vary from year to year. Unfortunately, it is particularly prone to change, with new strains appearing often. Scientists work to target the strains that will be the most prevalent that season so that the vaccination can be tailored accordingly. Despite their best efforts, they may sometimes get it wrong.
Read Also: Where To Get Free Flu Shot With Medicare
Serious Illness May Affect The Vaccines Your Child Gets
Children with moderate or serious illnesswith or without fevermay need to wait until they are better to get some vaccines.
Your child may not receive some vaccines if he or she has:
- A chronic health condition
- A weakened immune system
- Had a severe allergic reaction to previous dose of a vaccine or an ingredient in a vaccine
If your child has a serious illness or medical condition, talk to your childs doctor or nurse. They can help to determine which vaccines your child can and cannot get at each visit and how to best protect your childs health.
Should Pregnant People Be Vaccinated Against Flu
Yes! It is especially important for you to get a flu shot if you are pregnant or are newly postpartum. Getting a flu shot will help protect you and your developing baby. It even protects your baby 6 months after birth, while they are too young to get their own flu vaccine.
Flu is more likely to cause severe illness in pregnant people than in people who are not pregnant. When you are pregnant, changes in your immune system, heart, and lungs make you more prone to severe illness from flu â as well as to hospitalization and even death. If you have chronic conditions, like asthma or diabetes, your risk of complications is even higher. Pregnant people who get sick with the flu may also have a greater chance for serious problems for their developing baby, including premature labor and delivery.
Also Check: What Do They Prescribe For The Flu
Managing Side Effects After Immunisation
Common side effects following immunisation are usually mild and temporary . Specific treatment is not usually required. There are several treatment options that can reduce the side effects of the vaccine including:
- Drinking extra fluids and not overdressing if there is a fever.
- Although routine use of paracetamol after vaccination is not recommended, if pain and fever are present, paracetamol can be given check the label for the correct dose or speak with your pharmacist .
Why You May Feel Sick After Getting The Flu Vaccine
While the flu vaccine cannot give you the flu, it can have mild side effects that mimic influenza. This stems from your body producing the desired immune response.
These side effects usually occur soon after the vaccine is administered and last one to two days. Both the injected flu vaccine and the nasal flu vaccine may produce:
- Soreness, redness or pain at the injection site
- Low-grade fever
In addition, the nasal spray flu vaccine may cause cold-like symptoms as the weakened virus infects the nasal cells to trigger the immune reaction. Children may experience a runny nose and wheezing. Adults may have a runny nose, sore throat, and cough.
In randomized, blinded studies, no difference in side effects were seen between those who received the flu vaccine and those who got a saltwater shot, other than more soreness and redness at the injection site. Those getting a saltwater shot were just as likely to note body aches, fever, cough, runny nose, or sore throat as those getting a flu shot.
Don’t Miss: Maximum Strength Mucinex Fast Max Day Cold And Flu
Annual Vaccination Is Recommended
Annual vaccination before the onset of each flu season is recommended. In most parts of Australia, this occurs from June to September.
Immunisation from April provides protection before the peak season. While the flu continues to circulate, it is never too late to vaccinate.
The flu vaccine cannot give you influenza because it does not contain live virus. Some people may still contract the flu because the vaccine may not always protect against all strains of the flu virus circulating in the community.
What Are Common Flu Vaccine Side Effects To Expect
According to the CDC, you may experience short-lived, minor side effects of the flu shot or nasal spray vaccineas is the case with any vaccination or medication. You might think that side effects are a bad thing, but theyre actually signs that your immune system is responding and getting ready to protect you.
Heres how it works: The flu shot contains inactivated or incomplete strains of the influenza virus, while the nasal spray contains live attenuated strains. Neither form of the vaccine contains live flu viruses that can thrive in your body.
When you get any type of vaccine, the whole purpose is to expose your immune system to the virus, infectious disease expert Amesh A. Adalja, M.D., senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, tells SELF. Your immune system will start to rev up in response. These dead, partial, and weakened viruses are enough to provoke your immune system to develop antibodies to guard you against live and threatening flu viruses. It usually takes about two weeks for those to kick in and offer you protection, per the CDC.
Sometimes your immune system does this without causing noticeable symptoms, but other times, youll experience a few minor side effects as a result. Here are the most common ones you might experience:
You May Like: How Do I Get A Flu Shot At Cvs
Why The Flu Shot Still Matters
If youve had COVID-19, you still need a flu shot because different viruses cause the two diseases. A novel coronavirus, called SARS-CoV-2, causes COVID-19, and several influenza viruses that change every year cause the flu, the CDCexplains.
TheCDCs Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices determines the three or four flu viruses that are most likely to circulate in the next flu season, and vaccine manufacturers update the flu shot accordingly. In the United States, updates that address genetic changes in two influenza A viruses and one or two influenza B viruses are included in each seasons flu vaccines.
Itching At The Injection Site Or A Full
This would signal an allergic reaction, but its very rare to have an allergic reaction to the flu shot, Dr. Adalja notes. There are lots of myths about egg allergies and the vaccine,” he explainsbecause most flu shots and nasal sprays are manufactured using technology that involves small amounts of egg proteins, per the CDC.
“If you can eat scrambled eggs, youre not going to have a problem with the flu shot, Dr. Adalja says. If you have a confirmed egg allergy, you can likely still get the shot, the CDC says.
The caveat: If you experience severe itching at injection site, a rash all over your body, or signs of anaphylactic shock, seek immediate medical attention. And if youve had an allergic reaction to the flu shot in the past, you are among those few groups of people who the CDC recommends skip the flu shot.
Read Also: Cvs Minute Clinic Flu Shot Cost
Postpone Your Flu Shot If You Have Covid
The best way to protect yourself and others against seasonal flu infection this fall or winter is to get a flu shot. According to the CDC, the flu shot reduced the risk of flu by 40% to 60% when the vaccine was well matched to the viruses estimated to be spreading in previous flu seasons.
But if you have a suspected or confirmed coronavirus infection, the CDCadvises postponing a flu shot until after your symptoms have resolved. This recommendation is essential if you are very sick, but it also applies if you tested positive for COVID-19 and do not have any symptoms.
Who Can Get The Flu Vaccine
An annual flu vaccination is provided through the National Immunisation Program for most people in the community who are at an increased risk of serious complications.
In Victoria, an annual vaccination against influenza is free for:
- children aged 6 months to less than 5 years
- people who have medical conditions that put them at risk of serious complications of influenza
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people from 6 months and over
- pregnant women at any stage of pregnancy
- people 65 years and over.
Contact your doctor or immunisation provider for further information about eligibility. People not covered by these categories can also have an annual flu immunisation, but it is not available for free.
Read Also: Flu Shot In Rite Aid Pharmacy
Is The Flu Vaccine Safe
The flu vaccine is safe for most people and is recommended for everyone ages 6 months and older. People who should not receive flu vaccines are those who have had a severe allergic reaction to a flu or other vaccine in the past and those who have had a condition called Guillan-Barre syndrome.
If you have questions about your specific medical conditions, call your doctor to ask about if its safe for you to get a flu vaccine.
In 2020 The Flu Shot Was *a Bit* Better
The influenza vaccine is estimated to have been 39 percent effective during the 2019 to 2020 season, according to the CDC. To put that into a broader context, the flu shot generally provides about a 65 percent protection rate against contracting the flu, Dr. Adalja says.
So while even that 39 percent figure might sound low to you, it’s actually a decent number, and it does not mean you should skip your yearly shot . Flu season typically starts in October, peaks in December, and can stick around until May, so you want to be covered for all of it.
Just because the vaccine isnt 100 percent doesnt mean its worthless, says Dr. Adalja. And even if you do get the flu, you are much less likely to have a severe case requiring hospitalization, less likely to have major destruction to your life, and less likely to spread it.
Don’t Miss: Best Price For Flu Shot Without Insurance
Why Is The Flu Vaccine Recommended
While the flu vaccine isn’t 100% effective, it still greatly reduces a person’s chances of catching the flu, which can be very serious. It also can make symptoms less severe if someone does still get the flu after immunization.
Even if you or your kids got the flu vaccine last year, that won’t protect you this year, because flu viruses change. That’s why the vaccine is updated each year to include the most current types of the virus.
Sometimes the same types are included in the vaccine one year after the next. Even then, it’s still important to get the yearly flu vaccine because the body’s immunity against the influenza virus declines over time.
Is It Too Late To Get The Flu Vaccine For The 2021
The CDC recommends getting vaccinated early in the seasonideally by the end of October.
But its not too late to get a flu vaccine this year: Physicians say now is still a good time to get one. Flu cases typically rise in February and can continue into May. And since it takes about two weeks to build strong immunity post-vaccine, the sooner you get inoculated the better.
Keep in mind: Since getting a flu vaccine is not a guarantee that you wont get the flu, its important to continue to follow other public health best practices.
Everyone still needs to be mindful of things such as avoiding close contact with people who are sick, covering your nose and mouth when you sneezepreferably with a tissue, so it can be discarded afterwardand using good hand hygiene, such as washing your hands with soap and water or using alcohol-based hand rubs, and avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth when possible, Lee Nguyen, Pharm.D., associate clinical professor for the department of clinical pharmacy practice at the University of California-Irvine, tells SELF.
If youre interested in getting a flu vaccine, you can get one through your primary care physician if you have one, or another health care professional, as well as through many pharmacies and public health departments. Sometimes, flu vaccination clinics are set up in workplaces or other frequently visited locations within a community.
Don’t Miss: What Type Of Vaccine Is The Flu Shot
Can You Get The Flu From A Flu Shot
Jason DelCollo, DO, is board-certified in family medicine and on the faculty of Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine.
Some people worry about getting a flu shot because they are afraid they will get sick from the vaccine. Rest assured, it is not possible to get influenza from the flu shot. It does not contain intact viruses that can cause infection. It is possible that you might not feel well after you get a flu shot, but that may be for any of several other reasons.