Flu season is usually at its peak during the fall and winter months, typically starting in October and ending mid-March. However, this 2017 flu season may last a little longer this year. If you're debating if you should still get a flu shot, or wonder if you should for next season, here are some pros and cons to consider.
Pro: It Can't Give You the Flu
Luckily, the rumors are false. The weakened form that is injected is safe and won't get you sick. So don't be scared to get the shot if this is your worry.
Pro: It Protects Against Three Different Viruses
The flu shot protects against three forms of viruses, covering most of the possible strands of influenza. So, one shot and you'll be covered for three things.
Pro: It's Never Too Late to Get It
Influenza may peak in March and continue through May, so if you're thinking of getting a shot, you should run on over to your local pharmacy or doctor, just to be safe. But regardless, you can get the shot at any time of the year.
Pro: It's Usually Free or Very Cheap
Schools, churches, and pharmacies give flu shots either completely for free or offer them at a very low price. So protecting yourself from the flu shouldn't put a dent in the bank account. No excuses there.
Con: It Takes Time to Work
After getting the flu shot, it typically take two weeks before the shot begins to protect against different strains of the flu. Additionally, make sure you aren't sick before getting it, because the shot may not be enough to fight the existing virus and you'll still be sick.
Con: It's Susceptible to Allergies
Those who are allergic to eggs or poultry products may have an allergic reaction to the flu shot. Always ask you doctor before getting the shot if you know or think you may have an allergy to poultry products, and especially eggs.
Con: It May Come with Side Effects
Potential side affects vary – some people experience fever, muscle pain, nausea, or soreness around the injection site. Once again, before getting any flu shot, consult your doctor with any concerns.
Overall, it's up to you to weigh the pros and cons of getting a flu shot, but it truly is something to take seriously. Getting the shot can help avoid weeks of illness and fear of getting sick. Other ways to avoid the flu? Eat well, keep your body rested, avoid those who are sick, and always wash your hands throughout the day.