It’s that time of year – the flu vaccine is now available at PGOMG. We’ve found that many of our patients are unsure whether the flu vaccine is necessary. In fact, lots of questions regarding the flu vaccine are based on misconceptions about the vaccine itself. Doctors recommend the vaccine for everyone over six months of age, but especially for:
- Pregnant women
- Children under 5 years old
- Adults over 65 years old
- Individuals with certain medical conditions, such as diabetes and asthma
- People living with individuals who are in one or more of these high risk categories
As you can see, health providers suggest the flu vaccine for almost everyone, regardless of age, gender and medical status. The CDC backs up this notion in their list on who should get vaccinated against influenza.
Unfortunately, a fair number of people decide not to get the vaccine because they are under the impression it may cause more harm than good or that the vaccine isn’t altogether safe. Here are a few common misconceptions about the flu vaccine:
Myth: I’m too far along in my pregnancy to get the flu vaccine.
Fact: It’s never too late to receive the flu vaccine during a pregnancy. The vaccine is safe for both mom and baby, although pregnant women should not receive the vaccine via nasal spray.
Myth: The flu vaccine will give me the flu.
Fact: The flu vaccine will not give you the flu.
Myth: I can’t get the flu shot because I’m breastfeeding.
Fact: Women who are breastfeeding may safely get the flu vaccine.
Myth: The flu and the “common cold” are basically the same, and having the flu isn’t a big deal.
Fact: The flu is a virus and more serious than a simple cold. Flu symptoms are much more severe and can confine a person to bed for a much longer period of time.
Myth: I got a flu vaccine last year, so I won’t need another one this year.
Fact: The flu virus changes constantly, and the formulation of the vaccine is reviewed each year to make sure it is up to date and effective. Additionally, your body’s immunity from the vaccine declines over time.
To make an appointment to receive the flu vaccine, please contact PGOMG today.