Open Accessibility Menu

6 Key Facts about the Flu and the Flu Vaccine

6 Key Facts about the Flu and the Flu Vaccine

Have you received your flu shot this season? If not, there’s still time to protect yourself and your family. Flu shots are available without an appointment from these nine Ogden Clinic locations. Our flu shots have a $0 copay with most insurance plans and a low self-pay rate for those without insurance. Here are six facts everyone should know about the influenza virus.

Flu Clinic Locations

It’s smart to vaccinate early.

Doctors advise getting your flu shot in October or November. This will help ensure that you’re protected when the virus begins circulating. The peak season for the flu runs from January to March, and your flu vaccine protects you for up to six months. It’s also worth noting that the flu vaccine can take up to two weeks to become fully effective.

You can’t get the flu from the flu shot.

Injectable vaccines can’t cause the flu because they’re made with an inactivated version of the virus or with components of the virus. However, it’s not uncommon to experience flu-like symptoms such as a mild fever after getting the shot. They usually pass in a day or two. You may have also been exposed to a flu virus before you were vaccinated or shortly after, while antibodies are still developing.

Although rare, it’s possible that the vaccine can cause a serious disorder called Guillain-Barré syndrome. If you develop weakness or tingling in the legs after a flu shot, visit an Ogden Clinic provider as soon as possible.

Getting the flu is still possible (but it may not be as severe).

The flu shot is developed every year to protect against the most violent and common strains of the virus. However, it’s still possible to contract the flu even after receiving your shot. The good news is that your flu symptoms will likely be easier to live with than if you had skipped the shot. And the vaccine will help prevent more serious complications including infections.

After age 65, your risk for serious flu compilations increases.

Aging weakens the immune system, making it less able to defend the body against the flu virus. While some flu complications are mild, others can be dangerous such as phenomena. To help compensate for the decreased immunity in older adults, a vaccine containing four times the normal level of antigen (which triggers the body to produce virus-fighting antibodies) is available for people over age 65. It’s called Fluzone High-Dose and it’s available at these Ogden Clinic locations.

If you get the flu, you can spread it even before you start feeling symptoms.

A person can spread the flu starting one day before he or she feels sick and up to seven days after getting sick. Children can be contagious for longer than seven days.

Flu viruses are spread when a person who has the flu coughs, sneezes, or speaks and spreads virus-laden droplets into the air that others inhale. The virus also can spread when a person handles a surface with flu viruses on it, such as a door handle. So clean frequently-touched items such as doorknobs, tables, and cabinet handle with disinfectant and wash your hands frequently.

Most people can receive the flu shot beginning at 6 months of age.

Flu vaccines are recommended for all children over 6 months. If your infant is less than 6 months old, those around your baby should receive the vaccine to protect the baby, as infants are one of the highest risk groups for complications of influenza.

Visit our Flu Shot Education Page to learn more about flu shots at Ogden Clinic.