Saturday, September 30, 2023

Is It Necessary To Get A Flu Shot

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When Should I Get Vaccinated

Why It’s Important to Get an Influenza Vaccine Every Year
  • You should get a flu vaccine before flu viruses begin spreading in your community since it takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop in the body and provide protection against flu. Make plans to get vaccinated early in the fall, before flu season begins. CDC recommends that people get a flu vaccine by the end of October. However, getting vaccinated early is likely to be associated with reduced protection against flu infection later in the flu season, particularly among older adults. Vaccination should continue to be offered throughout the flu season, even into January or later. Children who need two doses of vaccine to be protected should start the vaccination process sooner of vaccine to be protected should start the vaccination process sooner because the two doses must be given at least four weeks apart.

The Importance Of Social Distancing

Two reasons that last flu season was such a quiet one: social distancing and improved hygiene, says Dr. Rehm. Last year, the use of face masks, social distancing and paying more attention to hand-washing all impacted the lower rates of flu and other respiratory viruses, she says.

All of these things are still part of our strategy going forward, not just to prevent COVID-19 and the flu, but other viruses, too, she adds. Having robust vaccines adds to these levels of protection.

It’s Also Ok To Space Them Out

If you are concerned about side effects from two shots at once, clinicians say it’s perfectly fine to space out your COVID-19 booster and other vaccines. Just remember that a delay increases the risk that you will get sick before you’re protected and experts say that catching either COVID-19 or the flu will be far worse than any potential risk in increased side effects. The CDC recommends that everyone age 6 months and older get a flu shot by the end of October.

Those age 65 or older should request either the high-dose flu shot or the adjuvanted flu vaccine, the CDC says both produce a stronger immune response and more protection for older adults.

After you get the flu vaccine, it will take 10 to 14 before you’re fully protected. This year’s flu vaccine protects against two new influenza strains in addition to last year’s, and it takes time for your body to make new antibodies.

On the other hand, it will take only two to three days for the COVID-19 booster to kick up your immunity, experts say, because your body is already primed from your vaccines earlier this year.

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I Heard That The Flu Vaccine Was Not Very Effective Why Should I Get It If Its Not Effective

While vaccine effectiveness can vary, studies show that flu vaccination reduces the risk of flu illness by between 40% and 60% among the overall population during seasons when most circulating flu viruses are well-matched to the flu vaccine. It is also the best way to reduce your risk of serious illness. Remember, if you dont get a vaccine at all, thats 0% effective.

What Are The Benefits Of Flu Vaccination

So Whats Your Reason for Not Getting a Flu Shot?

There are many reasons to get an influenza vaccine each year. Below is a summary of the benefits of flu vaccination and selected scientific studies that support these benefits.

  • Flu vaccination can keep you from getting sick with the flu.

  • Flu vaccination can reduce the risk of flu-associated hospitalization for children, working-age adults, and older adults.

  • Flu vaccination is an important preventive tool for people with chronic health conditions.

  • Flu vaccination has been associated with lower rates of some cardiac events among people with heart disease, especially among those who had had a cardiac event in the past year.

  • Flu vaccination can reduce worsening and hospitalization for flu-related chronic lung disease, such as in persons with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

  • Flu vaccination also has been shown in separate studies to be associated with reduced hospitalizations among people with diabetes and chronic lung disease.

  • Flu vaccination helps protect women during and after pregnancy.

  • Flu vaccines can be lifesaving in children.

  • Flu vaccination has been shown in several studies to reduce the severity of illness in people who get vaccinated but still get sick.

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Why It Is Important To Protect Your Newborn From The Flu

Getting the flu in adulthood can be a very unpleasant experience. But for new babies, getting the flu can leave them vulnerable to harmful complications.

If infants do get the flu, they are at high risk for complications, such as pneumonia, dehydration due to not being able to feed well, worsening of any underlying health problems they have, ear and sinus infections, and even death, warns Dr. Kronman.

Indeed, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , there were 199 flu-related deaths among children during the flu season of 2019-2020, 12 of whom were under six months old.

While vaccination is the safest and most efficient form of protection for children against the flu, the vaccination is not approved for babies under the age of 6 months. This means for the first six months of their life, they are reliant on those around them to keep them protected.

As babies cannot be vaccinated until they are 6 months old, it is especially important that adults around the baby take precautionsget their flu shots, limit visitors, wash hands, and make sure that the pediatrician is called before the baby gets very ill, says Gigi Gronvall, PhD, a professor at John Hopkins Bloomberg of Public Health and immunology expert.

Immature immune systems , lack of previous exposure, and more severe symptoms mean that babies under 6 months old are three times more likely to be hospitalized with flu-related complications than children of any other age.

Dont Be Scared Away By Covid

Even though the risk of contracting COVID-19 remains, particularly with the highly contagious delta variant, its important that people still make it out to a healthcare provider to receive their flu vaccine.

Healthcare facilities are taking extra precautions to make the environment safe for people who come in, Dr. Rehm notes. Masking and social distancing are taking place. And the reality is that the risk of not going in for the vaccine is higher than going in for the vaccine because it is such a safe environment.

That goes equally for kids, too. Just as its important to keep their immunization schedule on track despite the pandemic, its also crucial to get them vaccinated for the flu, Dr. Rehm says. Its important for children to get the flu vaccine, too, because the circulation of flu in children, if nothing else, puts adults at risk, too.

Influenza is a serious disease and its unpredictable, she says, and otherwise healthy children are unfortunately hospitalized and die every year because of it. So even for normal, healthy children, its really important to get vaccinated every year.

Finally, she adds, When young children get the vaccine for the first time, they need two doses separated by a few weeks in order to boost their immunity to the point that theyre protected against influenza. Check with your doctor for the specifics.

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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 the 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 if its safe for you to get a flu vaccine.

What Flu Vaccine Should I Get

Flu Vaccine: Why It’s Important in 2020/2021 | UC San Diego Health

Different flu vaccines are approved for use in different groups of people. There are flu shots approved for use in children as young as 6 months of age and flu shots approved for use in adults 65 years and older. Flu shots also are recommended for use in pregnant women and people with chronic health conditions. The nasal spray flu vaccine is approved for use in non-pregnant individuals, 2 years through 49 years of age. People with some medical conditions should not receive the nasal spray flu vaccine. Your provider will know which flu vaccine is best for you.

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Will Getting Both Vaccines At Once Enhance Any Side Effects

If you get both your flu vaccine and a COVID-19 shot at the same time, you shouldnt see any enhanced side effects. We see a higher degree of side effects with the COVID-19 vaccines, particularly the second dose of the mRNA vaccines, says Rivard. Thats our immune system building up a response.

Someone who receives both vaccines together will probably still see those expected side effects achiness, soreness where you received the shot, tiredness but nothing more than they would see if they got one of the vaccines on its own, she says.

Why Do We Need A Flu Vax Each Year

There are four types of influenza viruses: A, B, C or D. Types A and B cause severe disease in humans, and each year the seasonal flu vaccine protects against two A and two B strains.

The four types are related to the presence of specific proteins on the surface of the virus. These surface proteins arent stable and often mutate, or change.

When the body encounters these changes, the immune system cannot be activated.

So although the person may have been vaccinated against or infected by a old version of the viral strain, the body wont easily recognise and neutralise the new strain.

Due to these continuous changes, the World Health Organization reviews and updates its recommendations for the composition of the vaccine annually. It selects the viruses most likely to circulate in the coming season.

The Australian Influenza Vaccine Committee uses this recommendation to determine the composition of influenza vaccines for use in Australia.

Our 2022 seasonal flu vaccine protects against:

  • an A/Victoria/2570/2019 pdm09-like virus
  • a B/Austria/1359417/2021-like virus
  • a B/Phuket/3073/2013 -like virus.

However, some vaccines protect against three strains rather than four .

While its generally better to get the four-strain vaccine, the success of the vaccine depends on whether it matches the strain or strains dominating that season.

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Schedule An Appointment For Your Flu Vaccine In Duke Mychart

If you need a flu vaccine but dont have an upcoming appointment already set, you can schedule an appointment for your flu vaccine to help us manage the number of people in our clinics. This minimizes the risk of exposure to the flu and helps remove confusion of whether an illness could be the flu or COVID, said Dr. Timothy Andrew O’Donnell, MD. Some clinics may have extended or weekend hours for added convenience.

Individual appointments can be made through Duke MyChart or by calling your doctors office. If you need to schedule multiple appointments for yourself and family members, call . These appointments are for the flu vaccine only, and no other health care needs will be covered.

Reasons To Get A Flu Shot

Are Flu Shots Important?

A flu shot can save your life.

In fact, influenza can lead to death in serious cases. During the 2017-2018 flu season, the CDC estimates 80,000 people died.

The flu shot helps with herd immunity.

Most people are eligible to get the flu shot.

The flu shot changes each year.

The sooner you get the flu shot, the better.

You won’t get the flu from the flu shot.

A common misconception is that you can contract the flu from a flu vaccine, but that is not possible because the shot uses a deadened form of the virus.

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Two Bad Reasons For Not Getting A Flu Shot

We’re nearly a full month into fall, and flu season. You may have gotten a notice from your doctor that you can get a flu shot in his or her office. You pick up a prescription and the pharmacist mentions that flu shots are available at the pharmacy. Or your workplace offers a flu shot clinic. Yet you haven’t taken advantage of these offers. And you aren’t alone.

Two common reasons people give for avoiding the flu shot are 1) it will give me the flu and 2) it won’t work. Neither are accurate.

Who should get a flu shot?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that starting at age 6 months, everyone should get the flu vaccine each year. Vaccination is especially important for people who are prone to serious or deadly complications from the flu. This includes young children, pregnant women, older adults, and people with chronic health conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and asthma.

Getting vaccinated against the flu can’t give you the flu. Vaccines given by a shot are made with flu viruses that have been killed or made unable to replicate in humans. Flu vaccines given as a nose spray contains weakened flu viruses that can’t survive the warmth of the lungs, so it can’t flourish and cause the flu.

Vaccines are created to protect against the three or four mostly likely culprits. Some years the guesses are good and the vaccines are quite effective. Other years the guesses aren’t so good and the vaccines aren’t as protective as they could be.

Getting A Vaccine During Routine Visits

If you have an annual wellness exam or other visit with a Duke provider already scheduled, you can receive a vaccine during that appointment. Ask about receiving the vaccine ahead of your visit by sending a message to your doctor through Duke MyChart or during check-in. If youre accompanying your child to an appointment, you can also ask to get a vaccination at the same time your child receives one.

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Bottom Line: Get A Flu Shot

Flu activity tends to increase in October and November and can last as late as May, according to the CDC. The agency recommends getting vaccinated by the end of October because it takes two weeks for antibodies that fight the flu to develop in your body. So at this point, you may be a little late, but the CDC says it’s still beneficial to get the shot later than not at all.

Here’s What You Need To Know

Here’s why it’s important to get the flu shot every year

There is a real community need to be unified with flu vaccination because of COVID, said Cameron Wolfe, MBBS, an infectious diseases specialist with Duke Health. Hospitals and clinics get surges in patient volume every winter because of the flu, and the threat of strain on hospitals and clinics because of both the flu and COVID is quite real.

You can get your flu vaccine at Duke facilities, your doctors office, flu-only clinics, pharmacies, and other stores. Heres what you need to know.

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Can I Get The Flu Vaccine If I Have A Latex Allergy

Influenza vaccines used in Australia dont contain latex and are safe for people with a latex allergy or sensitivity. While the product information for Fluarix Tetra and Fluad Quad state that some presentations of the vaccine cannot be considered latex-free, these presentations are actually not supplied in Australia.

Flu Vaccine Side Effects

Flu vaccines are very safe. All adult flu vaccines are given by injection into the muscle of the upper arm.

Most side effects are mild and only last for a day or so, such as:

  • slightly raised temperature
  • muscle aches
  • sore arm where the needle went in this is more likely to happen with the vaccine for people aged 65 and over

Try these tips to help reduce the discomfort:

  • continue to move your arm regularly
  • take a painkiller, such as paracetamol or ibuprofen some people, including those who are pregnant, should not take ibuprofen unless a doctor recommends it

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Are There Carriers Of Influenza

No, not in the sense of people going around for days unwittingly spreading influenza. Some people may become infected with an influenza virus without experiencing any symptoms or only having mild symptoms for a short period. This may be how some people catch influenza without recalling having been in contact with anyone with the disease. However, it is thought that those without symptoms, or with minor symptoms, are generally less infectious than those with stronger symptoms.

Why The Cdc Updated Its Guidance

Why is it important to get your flu shot?

When the COVID-19 vaccines first came out, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended not getting other vaccines for 14 days before and after each COVID-19 dose.

The agency changed its guidance in May after data showed that the COVID-19 vaccine was safe and that other vaccines would not interfere with the immune response, experts say.

“That was because we wanted to really assess the side effects of the COVID vaccine as we rolled it out. We didn’t want to get that confused by giving other vaccines at the same time, says William Schaffner, M.D., a professor of infectious diseases at Vanderbilt Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee.

Now, the CDC says COVID-19 vaccines and other vaccines can be administered without regard to timing. This includes simultaneous administration of COVID-19 vaccine and other vaccines on the same day, as well as coadministration within 14 days.

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Who Should Not Get A Flu Shot

  • Children younger than 6 months
  • People with severe allergies to any ingredient in the flu vaccine
  • People who have had a severe allergic reaction to the flu vaccine in the past

People who have an allergy to eggs or who have had Guillain-Barré syndrome should talk to their healthcare provider before getting a flu vaccine. In addition, If youre not feeling well, you should check with your doctor before getting vaccinated.

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