By: Daniel Haight, MD
Thursday, January 17 2013
When are flu shots usually given? I used to answer by saying “around Halloween time.”
But a more obvious answer is “During Cold and Flu Season.” (By the way…that is NOW!)
It is this time of year that you might hear the BIGGEST MYTH about the flu shot:
MYTH: THE FLU SHOT CAN MAKE YOU SICK WITH THE FLU.
MYTH BUSTER: This is just not true. If a person gets the flu shot and then, by chance, catches a cold a few days later; the flu shot is not to blame. It was just a coincidence they caught a bad cold around the time they received their vaccination. The flu shot only helps block the influenza germ and not the germs that cause the common cold.
The flu shot will rarely make you feel run down. Or, it can make your arm feel a little sore. Those chances are tiny compared to the much higher chance of feeling horrible with the flu. One thing that is not a myth, having a cold will not make you feel nearly as bad as the flu (Those who have truly had the flu, can you back me up on this?).
Finally, another thing to remember about the flu shot is that it is not the only way to stay healthy. Eat nutritious foods, get enough sleep, stay home if you are sick and wash your hands with soap (or use an alcohol-based hand gel) frequently.
At Lakeland Regional, we are taking proactive measures to fight the flu. We are continuing to offer employees the flu shot free-of-charge. See what else we are doing and how you can join in this cause: http://bit.ly/10h93P3
We will follow the flu situation closely and take further steps to protect our patients and staff as necessary.For more myths about the flu shot, check out this article: http://www.cnn.com/2013/01/11/health/flu-shot-questions/index.html.