Four Reasons We Avoid a Flu Shot
Family Medicine Doctor Sheds Light on Flu Myths
(Aurora, Ill.) Each year approximately 226,000 Americans are hospitalized and more than 36,000 die from influenza and its complications. The elderly, young children and people with certain health conditions, are at a higher risk for serious flu complications.
Daniel Novella, M.D., a board certified family medicine physician at Rush-Copley, says that prevention is the best plan when it comes to avoiding the flu this season.
“One of the best ways to help avoid the flu is to get a flu vaccination,” says Dr. Novella. “However, many people avoid getting vaccinated because they believe they will get the flu from a flu shot or it does not work.”
Here are four reasons people say they will not get a flu shot, and the facts from Dr. Novella about the vaccine.
Reason #1: The flu vaccine will give me the flu.
Fact: Because the flu shot is made from killed virus, you cannot get flu from the flu shot.
Reason #2: The flu shot does not work.
Fact: Studies show that the effectiveness of the flu shot has ranged from 70% to 90% when there is a good match between the circulating viruses and those in the vaccine.
Reason #3: I don’t need to be immunized, I‘m healthy.
Fact: A person who contracts flu will start spreading the virus to others one to two days before they actually have their first symptoms and will continue to spread the virus for five to seven days as they talk, cough, and sneeze. Immunization is the best way to prevent getting or spreading flu.
Reason #4: I need to get the flu vaccine before December.
Fact: October or November is the best time to get vaccinated, but if you’re delayed in getting vaccinated, you can still get the shot in December or later.
Dr. Novella is fluent in Spanish and has special interests in women’s health, preventative medicine, newborn care and diabetes. He is a professional member of the American Academy of Family Physicians and the North American Menopause Society. To make an appointment call 630-898-3700 or request one online.