You Have Something Physical To Do Tomorrow
Have a marathon you’re running tomorrow morning? Scheduled to host a lengthy and involved presentation at work all day? You may want to wait to get your flu shot. While it’s been proven that the flu shot won’t give you the flu, according to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, there are some side effects you may feel for a few days after getting the vaccine. These side effects may include:
- Redness, swelling, or pain at the flu shot injection site
- Upset stomach
- Muscle aches
In some cases, you may not feel any negative side effects after getting your flu shot. However, if you can plan your shot around a slow week, it may be best, just in case you feel a little under the weather after getting your vaccine.
Myth #: You Don’t Need To Get The Flu Vaccine Every Year
There are two reasons why doctors recommend that people get the flu vaccine every year, Cunningham said.
For one, the strains of the flu virus that are circulating change from year to year. “It’s like the common cold there’s more than one type of virus that causes the flu,” and, in fact, there are hundreds of flu viruses, he said.
Each year, health officials identify the virus strains that are the most likely to cause illness during the upcoming flu season, according to the CDC.
Second, the immunity you develop after getting the shot wanes by the following year. “If you get your shot in August, you’ll be safe through March, but those antibodies won’t be for the next flu season,” Cunningham said.
What Side Effects Can Occur After Getting A Flu Vaccine
While a flu vaccine cannot give you flu illness, there are different side effects that may be associated with getting a flu shot or a nasal spray flu vaccine. These side effects are mild and short-lasting, especially when compared to symptoms of bad case of flu.
A flu shot: The viruses in a flu shot are killed , so you cannot get flu from a flu shot. Some minor side effects that may occur are:
Soreness, redness, and/or swelling where the shot was given
The nasal spray: The viruses in the nasal spray vaccine are weakened and do not cause severe symptoms often associated with influenza illness. In children, side effects from the nasal spray may include:
In adults, side effects from the nasal spray vaccine may include:
If these problems occur, they begin soon after vaccination and usually are mild and short-lived. A flu shot, like other injections, can occasionally cause fainting. Tell your provider if you feel dizzy or have vision changes or ringing in the ears. As with any medicine, there is a very remote chance of a vaccine causing a severe allergic reaction, other serious injury, or death.
You May Like: Z Pack For The Flu
Dispelling Misinformation About The Flu Vaccine Sickness Treatment And Recovery
If you’ve ever had the , you know how sick you can be. Chances are good that some of the advice friends and family gave you about avoiding or dealing with the flu was wrong. There seems to be no shortage of misinformation and bad advice when it comes to dealing with the flu and the flu shot.
Here are 10 common myths about the flu.
You Already Got Your Shot For The Year
The CDC recommends that you get your flu shot by the end of October so you’re prepared for the start of flu season. However, if you don’t get your flu vaccination within this timeframe, it’s not too late. Dr. Monique May, MD, advises, “Since it takes about 2 weeks for the flu shot to take effect, the latest I would recommend would be February to March.”
Keep in mind, you only need to get one flu vaccine annually. If you have already obtained your flu shot, you won’t need to get it again until next year. Once the vaccine is in your system, another shot won’t increase your immunity to the illness.
Recommended Reading: How Much Is A Flu Shot At Walgreens With Medicare
How Effective Is The Flu Vaccine
The flu vaccine gives the best protection against flu.
Flu vaccines help protect against the main types of flu viruses, although there’s still a chance you might get flu.
If you do get flu after vaccination, it’s likely to be milder and not last as long.
Having the flu vaccine will also stop you spreading flu to other people who may be more at risk of serious problems from flu.
It can take 10 to 14 days for the flu vaccine to work.
How Flu Vaccines Work
The flu vaccine stimulates the production of antibodies. Antibodies are proteins that provide immune defense against illness. It takes the body about two weeks to generate antibodies after receiving the flu vaccine. This means that during the two weeks after your flu vaccine, your body remains vulnerable to infection.
Every year the seasonal flu vaccine is tailor-made to protect against the particular flu strains that are currently circulating. Trivalent flu vaccines protect against two types of influenza A and one type of influenza B. Quadrivalent vaccines protect against these three types plus an additional strain of influenza B.
You May Like: Vitamin D For Colds And Flu Dosage
When Should I Get Vaccinated
You should get a flu vaccine before flu viruses begins 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 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, because the two doses must be given at least four weeks apart.
/6would It Be Helpful To Get A Vaccine When You Are Currently Sick
Flu vaccination demand surges the most during the current times, i.e. late October- early November. As most experts say, it’s absolutely safe to get a vaccine, even when you are reeling under the illness, as long as you take necessary precautions and do not feel sick enough to not go out.
Going by general advice, if what you have are upper respiratory symptoms, or have what would be a ‘mild’ infection, getting a vaccine would be absolutely safe, as long as you disinfect hands, use masks properly. However, if you do have a fever that’s high, or feel symptoms worsening, it may be advisable to reschedule vaccination. Even if you do feel that your bout of flu is severe enough to make you avoid routine tasks, consider rescheduling if possible.
What however, remains important is that you follow proper hygiene protocols and preventive tips, to safeguard others from possible risks.
Also Check: Fun Facts About The Flu
Can The Flu Vaccine Give Me The Flu
No. It is not possible to get influenza from the flu vaccine. Injectable flu vaccines contain either inactivated viruses or no virus at all, and neither one is capable of making people sick.
The nasal spray flu vaccine does contain live, weakened viruses. It also cannot make people sick with the flu. The viruses used in the nasal vaccine are cold-adapted. This means they are designed to only infect cooler environments, such as the environment inside your nose. The viruses in the nasal vaccine are incapable of infecting warmer body areas like your lungs. While some people who receive the nasal spray do develop some symptoms, those symptoms are typically milder and last a shorter time than they do in cases of flu infection.
Misconceptions About Stomach Flu
Is the stomach flu really flu?
No. Many people use the term stomach flu to describe illnesses with nausea, vomiting or diarrhea. These symptoms can be caused by many different viruses, bacteria or even parasites. While vomiting, diarrhea, and being nauseous or sick to your stomach can sometimes be related to flu more commonly in children than adults these problems are rarely the main symptoms of influenza. Flu is a respiratory disease and not a stomach or intestinal disease.
You May Like: Can Pregnant Women Take Cold And Flu Medicine
Can I Get The Influenza Vaccine And Covid
You can get the Pfizer or AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine and the flu vaccine but not on the same day. You should wait at least 7 days between receiving a dose of COVID-19 vaccine and the flu vaccine.
You arent required to have the vaccines in any particular order. The order will likely depend on vaccine availability, so you may receive whichever vaccine you have access to first.
If youre having the Pfizer vaccine, this means you may be able to get a flu vaccination in between the 2 doses, if appropriate.
In special cases, your healthcare provider may consider shortening the time period between the different vaccines or they may suggest you receive the vaccines on the same day. This will only be considered if:
- theres a high risk that youll be exposed to one of the diseases
- its highly likely that the opportunity of receiving either vaccine will be missed
If this is suggested, youll be counselled about any possible adverse events from each vaccine. Youll be advised to report any adverse events.
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.
Also Check: How Long Does The Flu Vaccine Protect You
Where To Get The Flu Vaccine
You can have the NHS flu vaccine at:
- your GP surgery
- a pharmacy offering the service
- your midwifery service if you’re pregnant
- a hospital appointment
If you do not have your flu vaccine at your GP surgery, you do not have to tell the surgery. This will be done for you.
It’s important to go to your vaccination appointments unless you have symptoms of COVID-19.
Covid Booster Shot 101
First off, make sure you’re eligible for a COVID vaccine booster. All U.S. adults age 18+ are eligible to receive a booster, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as long as….
It’s been at least 6 months since you finished your initial mRNA vaccine series .
It’s been at least 2 months since you got your Johnson & Johnson/Janssen vaccine.
FYI, you’re allowed to mix and match vaccines, according to the CDC. So, even if you got Moderna for your first and second dose, if your pharmacy or doctor only has doses of the Pfizer booster shot, that’s totally fine. In fact, there’s some evidence showing that mixing and matching different vaccines may offer increased protection against COVID-19 infection, but more comprehensive research is still underway, so you shouldn’t necessarily seek out a different brand for your booster.
Read Also: How Long Are People Contagious With The Flu
Some Vaccines Are Better Suited Than Others
Michael Clements, a GP and spokesperson for the Australia Medical Association Queensland, said there is a difference between the flu vaccines you pay for, and those that are free.
Dr Clements said the best vaccine is the free one offered by the Government to those who are eligible that is, people aged over 65, under the age of five, and those with chronic illnesses.
These vaccines are considered superior by doctors because they are specially purchased by the Government to meet the specific needs of those groups.
For example, those aged over 65 need a stronger vaccine compared to the rest of the population.
The vaccine for the rest of the population available from a GP, pharmacy, or offered by an employer can be provided by different brands through private contracts.
Dr Clements said, vaccines are considered inferior for over-65s, children and the chronically ill, they are completely fine for the fit and healthy population.
It’s important to note that all influenza vaccines administered in Australia are approved by the Therapeutical Goods Administration.
What About The Nasal Spray Vaccine
In addition to the flu shot, a nasal spray vaccine is available for non-pregnant individuals who are between the ages of 2 and 49. This vaccine uses a weakened form of influenza that cant cause disease.
As with the flu shot, people who have a mild illness can receive the nasal spray vaccine. However, people with moderate to severe illnesses may need to wait until theyve recovered.
You May Like: Does Orange Juice Help With The Flu
Allergic Reactions To The Flu Vaccine
It’s very rare for anyone to have a serious allergic reaction to the flu vaccine. If this does happen, it usually happens within minutes.
The person who vaccinates you will be trained to deal with allergic reactions and treat them immediately.
Anyone can report a suspected side effect of a vaccine through the Yellow Card Scheme.
When *shouldnt* You Get A Flu Shot If Youre Sick
Got a fever? Its a good idea to reschedule, says Isabel Valdez, PA-C, an instructor of internal medicine at the Baylor College of Medicine. Fevers are one of the bodys way of asking for help, she says. So, if you have a fever, its best to follow up with your medical provider and wait to get the flu shot until the fever resolves.
Theres not really a hard line in the sand of how high a fever is problematic, but Dr. Murphy recommends putting off your flu shot for anything over 101.
Also, if you have a more intense intestinal bug, are vomiting, or are just feeling really uncomfortable, Dr. Murphy suggests waiting. But, if its a little bit of an upset stomach thats mild, I would go ahead and get the shot, he says.
Given that were in the middle of a global pandemic, Dr. Murphy notes that its a good idea to make sure that your cold is actually just that before you roll up to your doctors office or local pharmacy with symptoms that could be confused with COVID-19. Get tested before going and getting your flu shot, he advises. Also, if you have a hacking cough from your cold, you may want to put off your shot until your symptoms ease up, just to make yourself and the people around you feel more comfortableeven if you know it’s “just” a cold.
Read Also: Will Getting Two Flu Shots Hurt You
When To Postpone The Flu Shot
Having cold symptoms isn’t necessarily a reason to avoid getting your flu shot. But sometimes it’s better to put it off for a few days.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends waiting until you’re better if:
- You have a fever over 101 degrees Fahrenheit
- You’re very ill
Fever isn’t a frequent cold symptom in adults. It’s more common in children, though.
If you’re planning to get your child vaccinated and they seem sick, monitor their temperature. If they have a fever, the healthcare provider may decide it’s better to wait than to vaccinate right away.
The healthcare provider giving you the vaccine should ask you if you have a fever or are sick before giving it. If they don’t, be sure to speak up.
When Can You Get Your Flu Shot
If you put off your flu vaccine because you werent at your healthiest, experts say you can pretty much reschedule as soon as you feel better. A reasonable guideline is when youve been fever-free for 24 hours, Dr. Murphy says. But it really comes down to judgment. When youre feeling good, just go for it.
Also Check: Flu Shot Necessary Or Not
Too Late For The Flu Vaccine
Flu viruses usually cause the most illness during the colder months of the year. In the United States, flu season is from October to May. Most cases happen from late December to early March.
It’s best to get the flu vaccine early in flu season, ideally by the end of October. That way, the body has time to make antibodies that protect it from the flu.
What if you aren’t vaccinated by then? Getting the vaccine later is better than not getting it at all. It’s still flu season well into spring. Even then it’s not too late for you and your family to get the flu vaccine. Many health care providers give flu vaccines through May if the flu virus is still circulating.
Getting a missed flu vaccine late in the season is especially important for people who travel. That’s because the flu can be active around the globe from April to September.