Dr. Hanna Lemerman, pediatrician, gets a lot of questions from concerned parents about the flu shot. Here are the most common ones she hears and the answers.
Why should I get the flu shot this year?
This year will be a severe flu season. Getting the flu shot this year will help to protect you and your child from getting flu and from severe illness.
When should I get the flu shot?
Get your flu shot today! It takes 2-4 weeks to develop full immunity to flu, so a flu shot now will protect you and your family by the winter holidays.
Will I get sick from the flu shot?
The flu shots do not cause flu. They contain inactivated flu virus, which is unable to make you sick. There are sometimes mild side effects of the vaccine such has fever or arm pain, but this is not from an infection. Many respiratory viruses causing cold-like symptoms circulate during the fall around the same time flu vaccines are administered. The flu vaccine cannot cause cold-like symptoms. When cold-like symptoms occur after a flu shot, this is coincidental.
Is the flu just another cold?
The flu is a serious respiratory virus. It can lead to pneumonia, ear infections, sinus infections, and it can cause wheezing. Every year, adults and children are admitted to the hospital with flu-related illness. The flu shot protects you from severe illness, so you can stay home, recover sooner and not spread flu to people in your family, school and work.
Can I get a flu shot if I have an egg allergy?
Yes, you can get the flu vaccine if you have an egg allergy. If you have experienced an allergic reaction to eggs that is more severe than isolated hives such as anaphylaxis or swelling of your lips or mouth, you should receive the flu vaccine in an office where a provider can recognize signs of allergic reaction.
For more information about where to get a flu shot, visit our website.