How Does The Flu Shot Work?

Medical experts recommend that everybody should get a flu shot before the peak flu season begins, which is from December to March. However, many people simply prefer not to take it because of the mistaken notion that taking the vaccine will actually give them the flu. There is a reason why people believe this.

It is a known fact that vaccines actually contain the virus that they are made to kill. This means, in the case of the flu vaccine, it actually contains the flu virus. This naturally triggers the question – won’t it then cause the symptoms in the person who gets the shot?

To understand how this works, take a look at how vaccines work.

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How flu shots work

The influenza virus is first deactivated and then used to prepare the vaccine. About ten to fourteen days after you’ve received the flu shot, the deactivated viruses help to develop antibodies in your body. These new antibodies are strong and robust enough to prevent any new influenza viruses from invading the body. This keeps you safe from the symptoms of flu even during the peak season.

Are there any side effects of getting the flu shot?

Not everyone experiences any adverse effects after having received the vaccine. In some people, there may be some swelling in the area of the injection. Others may also get a mild fever or overall body ache. However all of these symptoms are very mild and easy to manage. Pain or fever medications or localized ice application are usually enough.

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The side effects of the flu shot are far more bearable as compared to the symptoms of flu and the havoc it can cause to your personal and professional life as well as your finances.

Flu symptoms may include all or some of the following:

• Runny nose and sore throat

• Mild fever

• Weakness and fatigue

• Headache

• Severe muscle and joint ache

• Dry cough

In more severe cases, you may also experience sudden dizziness, nausea and vomiting, shortness of breath and trouble breathing.

Flu related complications

One of the most important reasons why getting vaccinated is strongly advisable is because it can protect you from many complications that are related to this condition. Some of the more common complications may include sinus infections, bacterial or viral pneumonia, asthma, dehydration and ear infections. Some people also suffer from muscle inflammation. All of these conditions can be life-threatening if not treated in time. Getting the vaccination can help protect you against all of these complications.

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