Everyone 6 months and older should get a flu vaccine.
Anyone can get the flu, and it can be serious. This year, due to COVID-19, it's more important than ever to get the flu vaccine to help keep you and the people you love healthy.
Q: What is the flu?
A: Influenza (the flu) is a respiratory illness, which means that it affects your airways. It's spread easily from person to person through coughing, sneezing, and talking. When you get the flu, it sometimes takes one to four days before you start noticing symptoms. This means that you could spread the flu to those around you before you even know that you're sick. Adults may be able to spread the flu for up to seven days after first becoming sick, and children may continue to spread the flu for even longer.
Q: How much does the flu shot cost?
A: The flu vaccine is free for many people, but costs may vary. Trillium Health will work with you keep costs as low as possible.
Q: When should I get vaccinated?
A: September and October are generally good times to be vaccinated against the flu. Ideally, everyone should be vaccinated by the end of October. However, anytime is better than not at all.
Q: How soon after I'm vaccinated am I protected?
A: It takes about two weeks for antibodies to develop, so getting vaccinated early is always best.
Q: What are the side effects?
A: While a flu vaccine cannot give you the flu, there are different side effects that may be associated with getting a flu shot. These side effects are usually mild and short-lasting, especially when compared to symptoms of the flu.
Possible side effects after the flu shot include:
- Pain, redness, or swelling on the arm where the shot was given
- Muscle aches
Q: Why do I need a flu shot every year?
A: A flu shot is needed every year for two reasons. First, a person’s immune protection from the vaccination declines over time, so a flu shot is needed every year for the most protection. Second, because flu viruses are constantly changing, vaccines are updated every year to protect against the viruses that research indicates will be most common during the upcoming flu season.