What Are The Flu Vaccine Side Effects
Common flu shot reactions include redness, soreness, or swelling in the area where the shot was administered. The nasal spray could cause different side effects, such as runny nose, sore throat, or a cough. These side effects are usually mild and short-lived.
Some people may also develop a low-grade fever or body aches. Similar to the other side effects, these symptoms are usually mild and quickly go away on their own. While some of these side effects may feel flu-like, it’s important to remember that flu vaccines will not make you sick with the flu.
Allergic reactions to the flu shot are rare.
Why Does The Flu Shots Effectiveness Vary So Much
The flu shots effectiveness has a bit to do with timing and educated guessing. This is because public health scientists and flu virus researchers have to predict 6 months in advance what we think the next years flu virus will look like.
You might be wondering how these predictions are made. Around February of each year, experts with the World Health Organization review data from the last flu season to make an educated guess about what strains are most likely to circulate during the next flu season. These experts then recommend which strains should be covered in the new flu shot. This gives the flu shot manufacturers the 6 months that they need to prepare the new flu shot. In late summer, the seasonal flu shot is typically ready to be given out.
In some seasons, the prediction of the strains matches the reality of the strains spreading in the community. When this happens, the vaccine is very effective. In other seasons, the flu virus may mutate, and strains that are not covered by the vaccine may cause the most illness. In these seasons, the flu shot is less effective.
Should I Get The Flu Vaccine If I’m Pregnant Or Breastfeeding
Years of studies and observation show that you can safely get a flu shot at any time, during any trimester, while you are pregnant or breastfeeding. Babies cannot get the vaccine until six months old. Because antibodies from the vaccine pass onto a fetus in the womb and through breast milk, you protect your baby even more by getting vaccinated.
Pregnant people should not get the nasal spray form of the flu vaccine. Those with a life-threatening egg allergy should not get the flu vaccine, whether pregnant or not.
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Flu Vaccine For Frontline Health And Social Care Workers
If you’re a frontline health and social care worker, your employer should offer you a flu vaccine. They may give the vaccine at your workplace.
You can also have an NHS flu vaccine at a GP surgery or a pharmacy if:
- you’re a health or social care worker employed by a registered residential care or nursing home, registered homecare organisation or a hospice
- you work in NHS primary care and have direct contact with patients this includes contractors, non-clinical staff and locums
- you provide health or social care through direct payments or personal health budgets, or both
Minimizing The Risk Of Canine Influenza
Here is some additional information about the canine influenza virus and tips for how to minimize the risk and reduce the spread of the disease:
- Canine influenza virus is a highly contagious disease that is easily spread through:
- Close proximity to infected dogs
- Contact with contaminated items
- People moving between infected and uninfected dogs.
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When Is The Flu Vaccine Given
It is possible to come into contact with flu viruses all year round, but the chance of the flu virus circulating in the community is highest during winter. For most people, the best time to be vaccinated against the flu is just before the start of the winter season. In Aotearoa New Zealand, this is between April and June. It takes around 2 weeks after vaccination for the vaccine to be fully effective. You may still get the flu in this time if you come into contact with the virus, so get vaccinated in time for winter.
How Safe Is The Flu Vaccine
The influenza vaccine is very safe. It cannot cause the flu. Side effects are usually mild and can include:
- mild soreness where the needle went into the arm for 1 to 2 days.
- a mild fever or aches for the first day or 2 after immunization.
Do not give your child ibuprofen or acetaminophen before or around the time of vaccination as it does not prevent the pain of injection and it could have an impact on how well the vaccine works. These medications can be used to treat fever, pain, or other bothersome side effects if they develop after vaccination.
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What Is The Flu
Influenza is a respiratory illness, which means that it affects your airways. It is spread easily from person to person through coughing, sneezing, and even talking. When you get the influenza virus it sometimes takes one to four days before you start noticing symptoms. This means that you could spread the flu to those around you before you even know that you’re sick. Adults may be able to spread the flu for up to seven days after first becoming sick, and children may continue to spread the flu for even longer.
Can I Have Flu And Covid
Yes. It is possible to have flu, as well as other respiratory illnesses, and COVID-19 at the same time. Health experts are still studying how common this can be.
Some of the symptoms of flu and COVID-19 are similar, making it hard to tell the difference between them based on symptoms alone. Diagnostic testing can help determine if you are sick with flu or COVID-19.
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What Is The Nasal Flu Vaccine
This type of flu vaccine is given as a nose spray instead of injection. Healthy children over the age of 2 can get the nasal flu vaccine. If your child has a chronic condition or illness, you should speak to your doctor to find out if the nasal flu vaccine is appropriate. The vaccine is given in 1 or 2 doses. Each dose is one squirt into each nostril.
- If your child is under 9 years of age and has received any flu vaccine before, they will only need 1 dose.
- If your child is under 9 years of age and hasnt received a flu vaccine before, they will need 2 doses, given at least 4 weeks apart.
This type of flu vaccine is not covered by all provincial or territorial health plans, which means you may have to pay for it.
Who Should Not Have The Flu Vaccine
Most adults can have the flu vaccine, but you should avoid it if you have had a serious allergic reaction to a flu vaccine in the past.
You may be at risk of an allergic reaction to the flu vaccine injection if you have an egg allergy. This is because some flu vaccines are made using eggs.
Ask a GP or pharmacist for a low-egg or egg-free vaccine.
If you’re ill with a high temperature, it’s best to wait until you’re better before having the flu vaccine.
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What Is An Enhanced Influenza Vaccine
An enhanced flu vaccine is one that contains an adjuvant, an ingredient designed to increase the immune-system response to the vaccine. People aged 65 and older are often given an enhanced influenza vaccine because since the immune system weakens with age they dont respond as well to the flu vaccine as healthy, younger adults.
Fluad Quad is an enhanced flu vaccine recommended for people aged 65 and over in Australia.
Who Should Get The Flu Vaccine
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends a flu vaccine for everyone 6 months of age and older.
But it’s especially important that those in higher-risk groups get vaccinated to avoid health problems from the flu. They include:
- all kids 6 months through 4 years old
- anyone 65 years and older
- all women who are pregnant, are trying to become pregnant, have recently given birth, or are breastfeeding during flu season
- anyone whose immune system is weakened from medications or illnesses
- people who live in long-term care facilities, such as nursing homes
- any adult or child with chronic medical conditions, such as asthma or diabetes
- kids or teens who take aspirin regularly and are at risk for developing Reye syndrome if they get the flu
- caregivers or household members of anyone in a high-risk group
- Native Americans and Alaska Natives
Babies younger than 6 months can’t get the vaccine. But if their parents, other caregivers, and older kids in the household get it, that will help protect the baby. This is important because infants are more at risk for serious problems from the flu.
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Can I Still Get The Flu If I’ve Been Vaccinated
Yes. Those who have been vaccinated may still get the flu. This can be caused by one or more of the following:
- Exposure to the virus before vaccination
- Exposure to the virus during the two-week period after receiving vaccination, before immunity develops.
- The possible strains of the flu that may be circulating are not included in the flu vaccine.
In the United States, the Food and Drug Administration reviews the flu data and determines the combination of viruses most likely to prevent the flu each year. Despite the amount of research that goes into the flu vaccine composition, the virus is constantly changing.
Therefore, the vaccine may not be a perfect match to the current circulating virus. The good news is, those who have been vaccinated generally have a milder case of flu than those who are unvaccinated.
Why Does My Child Need A Flu Vaccine Every Year
Flu viruses are constantly changing, so new vaccines are made each year to protect against the flu viruses that are likely to cause the most illness. Also, protection provided by flu vaccination wears off over time. Your childs flu vaccine will protect against flu all season, but they will need a vaccine again next flu season for best protection against flu.
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Why Do I Need To Get Vaccinated Every Year
You need to get the flu vaccine every year because each year the flu vaccine is made to match the different strains of flu virus likely to be in New Zealand. Occasionally the vaccine strains are the same for more than one year, but it is still recommended that you have the vaccine each year, as the protection provided by the vaccine lessens over time. Read more about vaccination against influenza.
Who Should Have The Flu Shot
The Australian Government recommends that everyone over the age of 6 months has a flu vaccination every year.
Its difficult to predict who will catch influenza , or who will become seriously ill from it. The flu can require hospitalisation and can even be fatal.
Getting vaccinated against the flu helps protect both you and the people around you. Its particularly important to protect vulnerable people in the community who cant be vaccinated, such as babies who are younger than 6 months and adults with low immunity.
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When Should I Get The Flu Shot
The flu season varies from year to year, but it has been known to start as early as October, peak in the winter months between December and February, and then may continue as late as May. The CDC recommends getting the flu vaccine early in the fall, before the flu season begins, ideally no later than the end of October. It takes about two weeks after vaccination for your body to build up the antibodies against the flu. It’s better late than never, though. Even if you don’t get the flu vaccine until January or later, you can still benefit from it.
It’s important to get the flu vaccine every year because both you and the flu virus change. The antibodies that you create to build immunity to the flu will decrease with time, so you need a new vaccine to renew your supply of antibodies. The flu viruses are also constantly changing, which is why there is a new formulation every year.
When Should I Get My Flu Shot
Though the exact timing of flu season varies year to year, infections generally start to ramp up around October. The best time to get your flu shot is in the early fall, ideally before the end of October.
“But if you miss that deadline, then get it as soon as you can afterward,” Dr. Moore says. “There’s no point at which it’s too late to get your influenza vaccine.”
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Why Should People Get Vaccinated Against Flu
Influenza is a potentially serious disease that can lead to hospitalization and sometimes even death. Every flu season is different, and flu can affect people differently, but millions of people get flu every year, hundreds of thousands of people are hospitalized and thousands to tens of thousands of people die from flu-related causes every year. Flu can mean a few days of feeling bad and missing work or it can result in more serious illness. Complications of flu can include bacterial pneumonia, ear infections, sinus infections and worsening of chronic medical conditions, such as congestive heart failure, asthma, or diabetes. An annual seasonal flu vaccine is the best way to help protect against flu. Vaccination has been shown to have many benefits including reducing the risk of flu illnesses, hospitalizations and even the risk of flu-related death in children. While some people who get a flu vaccine may still get sick, flu vaccination has been shown in several studies to reduce severity of illness.
Does A Flu Vaccine Increase Your Risk Of Getting Covid
There is no evidence that getting a flu vaccine increases your risk of getting sick from a coronavirus, like the one that causes COVID-19.
You may have heard about a study published in January 2020 that reported an association between flu vaccination and risk of four commonly circulating seasonal coronaviruses, but not the one that causes COVID-19. This report was later found to be incorrect.
The results from that initial study led researchers in Canada to look at their data to see if they could find similar results in their population. The results from Canadas study showed that flu vaccination did not increase risk for these seasonal coronaviruses. The Canadian findings highlighted the protective benefits of flu vaccination.
The Canadian researchers also identified a flaw in the methods of the first study, noting that it violated the part of study design that compares vaccination rates among patients with and without flu . This flaw led to the incorrect association between flu vaccination and seasonal coronavirus risk. When these researchers reexamined data from the first study using correct methods, they found that flu vaccination did not increase risk for infection with other respiratory viruses, including seasonal coronaviruses.
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How Long Does It Take For The Flu Shot To Be Effective
Here’s what a doctor who treats the flu says.
Flu season has arrivedand if you haven’t gone for your annual flu shot yet, you’ve probably at least penciled it into your calendar . Seriously, there’s no reason not to. The flu vaccine is simple, takes zero time, and is the best way to reduce your odds of spending a week in flu agony.
But there’s one thing the flu shot can’t do: safeguard you from the flu immediately. In fact, the vaccine needs some time to work its magic.
It takes about two weeks after getting the vaccine for your body to build up enough antibodies to protect against the flu,Jean Moorjani, MD, a pediatrician at Orlando Health Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children, tells Health. That means the flu could still creep up on you during that two-week waiting period.
This is why it’s important not to see your flu shot as a hall pass and let other flu-preventing precautions fall to the side. You still need to get enough sleep, maintain a healthy diet, and stick to your workout schedule to keep your immune system in fighting shape in case you do encounter the flu virus.
And of course, wash your hands with soap and water regularlyespecially before you eat or touch your eyes, nose, or mouth, all of which are conduits that allow flu viral particles to enter your body and infect you. Even after the two-week wait, never slack on these anti-flu measures.
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.
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