The flu or influenza is a viral infection that can cause fever, sore throat, cough, chills, headache, and muscle aches. While it is a common infection, it is important to note that the flu can be serious, even for healthy individuals. Flu vaccination is especially important for adults over the age of 65 or those with underlying conditions that make it hard for the immune system to fight the virus.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is the flu shot a vaccine?
Yes, flu vaccinations, also known as flu shots, cause the body to create antibodies which work to protect against infection from the viruses used to make the vaccine. Most seasonal flu vaccines protect against four different strains: an influenza A (H1N1) virus, an influenza A (H3N2) virus, and two influenza B viruses.
How often should I get a flu shot?
All children and adults 6 months and older should get a flu vaccination once a year.
When is the best time to get a flu shot?
Check the CDC website for recommendations on when you should get your flu shot.
Should I get a flu shot?
Even healthy people can get and spread the flu. The flu can cause serious health problems, especially for those who have conditions which prevent them from receiving the shot or children too young to be vaccinated. Spreading the flu to another person can cause a potentially life-threatening health problem, especially in those at high risk for complications. According to studies flu vaccines significantly reduce the risk of transmitting the virus.
How long does the flu shot last?
Strains of the flu vary from year to year which causes the vaccines to change each year. It is important to make sure you have immunity to the strains most likely to cause an outbreak, therefore, it is recommended you get a flu shot once a year.
Can the flu shot make you sick?
You can’t get the flu from the flu shot! The vaccines are made from inactivated (dead) virus, live (weakened) virus, or a single protein from the flu virus. Your body will have a natural immune response to the vaccine that may include symptoms like fever, aches, and chills brought on by your body creating antibodies to the virus.
What does a flu shot cost?
Flu shots are free with most insurance. There is no co-payment unless required by your insurance plan.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2022, September 20). Flu-related questions & answers by topic. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved November 9, 2022,
- Influenza. (2022, November 3). Retrieved November 9, 2022,