As you know, we’re all focused on staying healthy right now, especially in the face of COVID-19. Our healthcare system is already stressed and overwhelmed, so it’s important that we protect ourselves and our families now by getting the flu shot this year.
There are a lot of misconceptions about the flu and the flu vaccine, so I wanted to share some information that might be helpful when making the decision to get the flu vaccine this year. I believe that everyone has the right to make the choices that are best for their family, and having knowledge and key facts will help you to do so!
About the Flu & Flu Vaccine
- The flu vaccine is safe, effective, and protects everyone aged 6 months and older.
- There were an estimated 39-56 MILLION cases of the flu last year in the United States.
- Last year there were half a million hospitalizations due to the flu, this included six pediatric flu-related deaths in Michigan for 2019-20. (Source)
- A flu shot CANNOT cause the flu, the vaccine doesn’t even have the live virus in it
- The most common side effects are soreness, redness, tenderness or swelling where the shot was given, but most people experience no side effects at all.
- If you develop a low-grade fever, headache, or muscle aches – these minor side effects aren’t the flu, they’re a sign your body is developing the immunity it needs.
- Flu vaccination has been shown to reduce the risk of having to go to the doctor due to the flu by 40 to 60 percent.
- If you get sick with the flu, the vaccination has been shown in many studies to reduce its severity.
- A 2018 study showed that getting a flu shot reduced a pregnant woman’s risk of being hospitalized with flu by an average of 40 percent. (Source)
Did you know it takes up to two weeks after you get the flu shot for your body to build up immunity to prevent the flu? Don’t wait to get vaccinated, now is a perfect time and there is an ample supply of the flu vaccine throughout Michigan. Check with your doctor, pharmacy, and local health department to see where you can get the vaccine.
Lady (our new puppy) and I were busy making appointments to get the flu vaccine for our family today, so make sure to check out all of the options you have as well!
Are you a parent with questions for your doctor about the flu?
Be sure to chat with them and also explore resources like IVaccinate.org before your visit!