What is flu vaccine?
Flu Vaccine, also known as flu shots, protect you from the flu virus. You normally get it in your arm. It's made from the three or four flu viruses that are most likely to make you sick during the upcoming year.
What are the benefits of flu vaccination?
While how well the flu vaccine works can vary, there are a lot of reasons to get a flu vaccine each year.
Flu vaccination can protecting yourself from flu also protects the people around you who are more vulnerable to serious flu illness.
Flu vaccination can help protect people who are at greater risk of getting seriously ill from flu, like older adults, people with chronic health conditions and young children.
Flu vaccination can reduce the risk of more serious flu outcomes.
Why do I need a flu vaccine every year?
A flu vaccine is needed every season. Firstly, the body's immune response from vaccination declines over time, an annual vaccine is needed for optimal protection. Secondly, because flu viruses are constantly changing, the formulation of the flu vaccine is reviewed each year and sometimes updated to keep up with changing flu viruses. For the best protection, everyone 6 months and older should get vaccinated annually.
People who can get the flu shot:
Almost everyone 6 months of age and older.
Some people are more at risk of getting very sick from complications of the flu than others. These groups should be sure to get a flu shot each year:
Children, especially from 6 months of age to the age of 5
Seniors over age 65
People with existing health conditions
Travelers and people living abroad
Persons who provide important community services (such as police, fire department personnel, emergency medical services) should consider getting an influenza vaccine so that those services are not disrupted during an influenza outbreak.
People who can't get the flu shot:
Children younger than 6 months are too young to get a flu shot
People with severe, life-threatening allergies to flu vaccine or any ingredient in the vaccine. This might include gelatin, antibiotics, or other ingredients.
Talk to your doctor if you are not sure if you are a good candidate for flu vaccine.