According to Healthline, approximately five to 20 percent of people in the United States contract the flu, or influenza, each year. The flu is a serious illness that can result in hospitalizations, especially for infants, small children, and the elderly. The flu shot is the first line of defense against this serious illness. Unfortunately, there are several myths associated with the flu shot that keep people from getting a potentially life-saving vaccination.
Here are a few of the most common myths about the flu shot.
I Can Get the Flu From a Flu Shot
If you've ever felt achy or had a low-grade fever after getting a flu shot, you might have bought into a common misconception: the flu shot causes the flu. The flu shot contains inactive strains of the flu and any symptoms you experience are caused by a reaction to the inoculation. The minor symptoms will vanish within a few days and in most cases, they are much less severe than flu symptoms.
In very rare cases, a person may experience a more severe reaction to the flu. Symptoms include swelling, hives, or a high fever. If you experience these symptoms, contact your doctor.
I Don't Need to Get a Flu Shot Every Year
I got a flu shot last year, so I'm covered for this year too, right? To be effective, it's important to get a flu shot every year. The flu virus mutates and each year, there is typically a different strain of the virus that is making people sick. Getting the flu vaccine every year helps ensure you are protected against the flu strains that are active that year.
It is especially important for the elderly, young children, and pregnant women to receive a flu shot.
My Doctor Is the Only Person Who Can Administer a Flu Vaccine
You've been thinking about getting the flu shot, but don't want to deal with the hassle of making a doctor's appointment just to get a vaccination. Getting the flu shot is as easy as visiting your local urgent care clinic. In many cases, you don't even need to make an appointment to get a vaccination. Simply walk in, inquire about getting a flu shot, and walk out knowing that you are protected for another flu season.
The best way to avoid contracting the flu this year is to visit your local urgent care clinic to quickly and conveniently receive a flu vaccination.