Should I Get My Flu Shot?


Annual flu vaccination is recommended for everyone 6 months and older as the best way to protect against influenza.  By getting a yearly flu vaccine, you can protect yourself from illness, and protect those around you.  Adair County Health System will be offering the flu vaccine this fall following clinic appointments, scheduled clinics and in the schools, as vaccine becomes available. It is recommended to get the influenza vaccine early in the season, as it takes a couple weeks for your body to respond to the antigen in the vaccine, to build immunity.    Quadrivalent vaccine is available this season which covers 4 strains of influenza as well as the High Dose trivalent for those age 65 and older.  High Dose flu vaccine has a higher antigen count to help build a better response for weakened immune systems.  Those age 65 and older may also need pneumonia vaccine and this can be given at the same time.

Influenza is a respiratory illness that most often causes fever, headache, extreme tiredness, coughing, sore throat and a runny or stuffy nose. Occasionally, nausea and diarrhea can accompany the respiratory symptoms, but is more likely in children. The flu virus is spread when people who are ill cough or sneeze without covering their mouths and noses, sending tiny droplets of saliva into the air for others to breathe in and get sick.  A person can also get the flu by touching a surface or object (such as a door handle) that has been touched by someone with the flu (who coughed into their hand), and then touching their own mouth, eyes or nose.  You cannot get influenza from getting the flu shot.

In addition to getting an annual flu vaccination, CDC recommends ways you can also protect yourself and others by practicing good health habits such as covering your mouth when you cough, washing your hands, getting plenty of rest and staying home when sick.  If you get the influenza and antivirals are prescribed as part of treatment, you should take them as instructed.

For more information about influenza, visit https://idph.iowa.gov/influenza or www.cdc.gov/flu For information about seasonal influenza clinics in Adair County, visit adaircountyhealthsystem.org or call Adair County Public Health at  641-743-6173.

By Stephanie Claussen

Adair County Health System

Community Health Coordinator

The information provided on the Adair County Health System’s Blog is not a substitute for professional medical advice and care. If you have specific needs, please see a professional health care provider.
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