Between September and October every year, the flu shot becomes available. Many people get the shot to try and avoid getting a nasty case of the flu. The flu shot works in a way that makes your body think it already has influenza (the flu) so that you can avoid getting the actual flu if you come in contact with it. This guide will help you determine when and why the flu shot is necessary.
When Should I Get the Flu Shot?
The first decision is to talk about when the best time is to get the shot. Since the flea season starts around September, most people will begin getting the shot around August. However they typically offer it through October since the flu season can last through the end of the winter. You will often find flu shots and nasal sprays of the vaccine at pharmacies, doctor offices, and drug stores. It can take up to two weeks to build an immunity to the flu, so you should get it as early as possible.
Getting the Flu Shot Every Year
You may also be wondering why you have to get it every year. This is because every year, the flu vaccine is adjusted slightly to fit the newest flu viruses. The flu virus evolves at a rapid pace, so the only way for an effective vaccine is to keep up with these changes. Last year’s vaccine might still protect you from the flu this year, but it is far less likely. The antibodies from the flu shot also decrease over time so you need to get a new boost of the vaccine.
Who Needs the Flu Shot?
In general, anyone over the age of six months is recommended to get the flu shot. However there are some groups of people that could get severely ill if they go the flu, and therefore should definitely get it. This includes older adults, very young children, pregnant women and individuals with certain medical conditions that lower their immune system such as having HIV or AIDS, asthma, epilepsy, cerebral palsy, obesity, sickle cell disease, kidney or liver disease, muscular dystrophy, cystic fibrosis, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. On the other hand, anyone that is allergic to eggs shouldn’t get the flu vaccine because it could have negative consequences.
Types of Flu Vaccines
There are two main types of fly vaccines: the flu shot and the nasal spray. The shot is the most common type of vaccine and includes an inactive vaccine of the killed virus. This can be given to anyone between 18 and 64 years old. The nasal spray is available for anyone 2 to 49 years old and has a very low dose of the live flu virus.