The flu season is generally thought to be the months between October and May each year and this one is believed to be one of the more prevalent and deadly in recent years.  Each year we're advised to get a flu shot, but even more so this year.

On the WYRK Morning Show on Monday, Clay Moden mentioned a flu vaccine clinic at the Galisano Center for Community Health in Niagara Falls.  The vaccine was free with no co-pay if you have insurance or $25.00 without insurance.

I expected a long line, but I was in and out in about 10 minutes.  The first question was an easy one.  They asked when I had my last flu shot and the answer was NEVER.  Since it was my very first flu shot I had some questions and they had the answers.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, many people are concerned that the injection will cause you to get the flu.  They cannot cause the flu.  There is no live flu virus in flu shots.

Flu vaccine can:

  • keep you from getting flu
  • make flu less severe if you do get it, and
  • keep you from spreading flu to your family and other people.

Flu is more dangerous for some people:

  • infants and young children
  • people 65 years or older
  • pregnant women
  • people with certain health conditions, or a weakened immune system

There are some people who should not get the flu vaccine; those who have any severe, life-threatening allergies, or if you ever have had Guillain-Barre Syndrome (also called GBS).

There are many different flu viruses and they're always changing.  Each year a new flu vaccine is made to protect against three or four viruses that are likely to cause the disease in that upcoming flu season.  Even when the vaccine doesn't exactly match those viruses it will likely provide some protection.

You only need one vaccine each flu season, so for this year at least I'm protected.