Thirty to 50 million people each year in the United States, and across the world, contract the flu virus. Samir Khalil, MD, of Family Care, located in Paterson, New Jersey, highly recommends that children over six months of age and adults receive the flu vaccine each year to avoid potentially severe flu symptoms. For a flu vaccine and to protect yourself and your family from the flu virus, call or book your appointment online.
The flu shot, or flu vaccine, is a vaccination against the influenza virus. This virus can cause mild to life-threatening symptoms that can especially impact the very young, very old, and those who have compromised immune systems.
The flu vaccine is an inactivated vaccine, which means that it uses a dead form of the influenza virus to build you or a member of your family’s immune system. This vaccine is needed each year, as the vaccine uses the specific strain of flu that is most likely to affect the population in a given flu season.
Flu vaccination is most commonly given as a shot, just below the surface of the skin. Some years it also may be available as a nasal spray. Having the flu shot does not guarantee you will not contract the flu, but rather helps to build an immunity against the disease, and help to minimize or eliminate symptoms of the virus.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that everyone over the age of six months receive the flu shot each year. Most everyone is at risk for exposure to the flu, but some populations are more likely to have serious symptoms, such as:
Those who are allergic to eggs, have a history of Guillain-Barre syndrome, or children less than six months old should not have the flu vaccine.
Some people have mild symptoms after taking the flu shot, which usually is seen within one to two days of receiving the vaccine. These symptoms are usually mild, and much less severe than if you were to have the flu.
Side effects of the flu shot may include:
Family Care offers the flu vaccine from October through May, which is considered flu season. During this time, you are welcome to call or come in for a flu shot. If you think you may have the flu, Family Care offers same-day sick visits, for adults and children.
For a flu vaccine, call, come in or book an appointment at Family Care.