The flu shot can give me the flu.

You can't get the flu from the flu shot. The injectable vaccine is made either from killed viruses that can't cause the flu or without flu viruses altogether.

I'm pretty healthy and hardly ever get sick. I don't need a flu shot.

Even healthy people can get and spread the flu. The flu can cause serious health problems, especially for those who already have a chronic illness or are too young to be vaccinated. If you catch and spread the flu to someone, it can cause a potentially life-threatening health problem, especially in those at high risk for complications.

The flu isn't a big deal. Besides, you can't do anything about it anyway.

The flu can be severe and sometimes life-threatening. According to the CDC, each year in the United States up to 49,000 people die from the flu and its complications. In addition, an average of 226,000 people are hospitalized annually. Getting your flu shot each year helps protect you against getting and spreading the flu.

I was vaccinated against the flu years ago. I don't need to get vaccinated again.

Strains of flu viruses typically change each year, so there is a new flu shot each year. In addition, the flu shot wears off over time. Because of this, annual vaccination is recommended to help protect yourself and those around you. Even if you got a flu shot last year, you should still get one this year.

Flu shots don't work.

Vaccine effectiveness can vary. However, recent studies show that the flu vaccine significantly reduces the flu risk when most circulating flu viruses are like the vaccine viruses. Even when there’s not a good strain match, the vaccination can still help offer some protection such as a milder case of the flu.

WHICH FLU SHOT IS RIGHT FOR YOU

TIPS TO AVOID THE FLU

Get a flu shot!

The CDC recommends that people over the age of 6 months get an annual flu shot.

Avoid close contact.

Avoid close contact with people who are sick. When you are sick, avoid close contact with others to help protect them from getting sick too.

Stay home when you are sick.

If possible, stay home from work, school, day care, and errands when you are sick. You will help prevent others from catching your illness.

Cover your mouth and nose.

Use a tissue to cover your nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing, then drop it in the trash. If you don't have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve rather than your hands.

Wash your hands often.

Washing your hands often will help protect you from germs. Use soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub.

Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.

Sickness is often spread when a person touches something that is contaminated with germs and then touches his or her eyes, nose or mouth.

Other ways to stay healthy:

  • Get plenty of sleep
  • Eat nutritious foods
  • Exercise regularly
  • Drink plenty of fluids
  • Manage your stress level
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces