Common Myths About the Flu Shot
November 03, 2021
When it comes to flu vaccines there are many common misconceptions regarding how safe it is and how effective it is. To help you make the most informed decisions regarding you and your loved one’s health as it’s related to flu shots, we have some facts from the CDC!
MYTH: A flu vaccine can give you the flu.
FACT: Flu shots are made with either a single protein from the flu virus, or with inactivated (killed) viruses. The nasal spray vaccine contains live viruses that are weakened so that they will not cause illness.
MYTH: It is better to get sick with the flu than get a flu vaccine.
FACT: It is better to get a flu vaccine. The flu can be a serious disease, especially among young children, older adults, and people with certain heath conditions like diabetes, asthma, or heart disease. Even among healthy children and adults, any flu infection can carry a risk of serious complications, hospitalization, or death. Therefore, getting a flu shot is a safer choice than risking illness to obtain immune protection.
MYTH: You don’t need a flu shot every year.
FACT: The CDC recommends getting a yearly flu vaccine for everyone 6 months or older. This is because a person’s immunity from vaccinations declines over time, so a yearly vaccination is needed to get the best protection against the flu. Flu viruses are constantly changing, so the vaccine composition is reviewed and updated every year as needed based on which influenza viruses are making people sick.
MYTH: There are often serious reactions to the flu vaccine.
FACT: Serious allergic reactions to the flu shot are very rare. If they do occur, it is usually within a few minutes to a few hours after vaccination. While these reactions can potentially be life-threatening, effective treatments are available.
MYTH: Getting vaccinated twice will provide added immunity.
FACT: Studies have not shown a benefit from getting more than one dose of a flu vaccine during the same flu season, even among elderly people with weakened immune systems. With the exception of children getting vaccinated for the first time, only one dose of flu vaccine is recommended each season.
MYTH: Getting a flu shot will increase your risk of getting COVID-19.
FACT: There is no evidence that getting a flu vaccination increases your risk of getting COVID-19.
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