Flu Shot 2022: When and Why to Get Vaccinated
October 20, 2022
Just how important is the flu shot? According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates, the 2021-22 flu season resulted in…
- 8-13 million flu illnesses
- 3.7-6.1 million flu-related medical visits
- 82,000-170,000 flu-related hospitalizations
- And 5,000-14,000 flu-related deaths
Those are some serious numbers!
Now that the Mount Olive, North Carolina region, is just now experiencing those first chilly fall temperatures, the cooler weather begs the question: What is the best time to get your flu shot?
When should I get a flu shot?
Ideally, your flu vaccine needs to be in effect before the influenza virus makes its way to the Mount Olive community. Flu shots become available in September each year.
Although predicting the exact time of the flu virus in your community is practically impossible, the CDC suggests that adults and children older than 6 months get a flu shot by the end of October.
Running out of time, huh? It’s time to stop by the Mount Olive Family Medicine Flu Shot Clinic.
To get your vaccine, you don’t even need an appointment. Just come by ANY WEDNESDAY in October, and follow the signs outside the MOFMC office to the Flu Shot Clinic (being held in the rear entrance of the clinic).
LEARN MORE: Flu Shot Clinic information
NOTE: While we recommend you get your flu vaccination by the end of October, the vaccine can still provide protection during peak of flu season (around January or February) if you get it after October. In fact, the CDC continues encouraging people to get their flu shot through the entire duration of flu season – which can last as late as May.
Who needs a flu vaccine?
The CDC recommends all people over 6 months of age get a flu shot each year. Children and the elderly are most at risk for contracting the influenza virus.
However, it is a good idea for people of all ages (over 6 months) to get the extra protection.
Certain kinds of people – such as children, adults over 65, pregnant women, healthcare workers, those with lung disease, and those who have immune-suppressing illnesses – may want to consider getting the flu shot even earlier, as soon as their provider offers the vaccine each year.
Regardless, getting the flu shot is truly the best chance for ALL people to prevent a nasty bout of the flu this winter season!
NOTE: If you have had a severe reaction to the flu vaccine in the past, check with your primary care doctor first about getting a shot.
Are there any risks associated with the flu vaccine?
The flu vaccine is absolutely safe – evaluated thoroughly each year by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) based on the most current strains of the influenza virus.
It is a common misconception that the flu shot can cause a patient to contract the flu. The flu vaccine uses an INACTIVE virus – which means it does NOT cause illness.
However, it can take up to two weeks for the vaccine to take into effect. Therefore, anyone who contracts the flu after they have received an influenza vaccine must have already had an ACTIVE flu virus in their system before receiving the flu shot OR the two-week window might not have closed just yet.
Or, perhaps, they do not even have the flu at all! There are various other illnesses that mimic the symptoms of the influenza virus – such as the common cold and COVID-19.
Mount Olive Family Medicine Center | Flu Shot Clinic
Still need to get your 2022 flu shot? Make your way to the Mount Olive Family Medicine Flu Shot Clinic.No appointment needed! Our Flu Shot Clinic is open to walk-in patients every Wednesday. Just follow the signs outside the MOFMC office to the Flu Shot Clinic (being held in the rear entrance of the clinic).
Have more questions about our Flu Shot Clinic? Learn more here or call us at 919-658-4954.