GO: American Family Care is holding its "National Flu Prevention Week" from October 23-October 29 where participating locations are offering flu shots for just $15
Afraid of that yearly flu? Yeah, us too.
The question remains the same every year; should you get the flu vaccination—especially if you are young and relatively healthy.
Here’s how the flu vaccine works: doctors get together to try and predict what strands of the flu virus will be spread during the upcoming winter. With this information they re-create the pathogens. Then, anyone who gets a flu shot gets a small dose of the virus and their bodies figure out how to beat the microbes. When the virus starts spreading, your immune system remembers the best way to deal with the microbes.
The CDC recommends all high-risk health groups should get vaccinated, which includes people with suppressed immune systems, including the young and those over 65, as well as individuals who are around immunosuppressed patients.
Dr. Charles Webb, from local urgent care provider American Family Health, believes that not only high-risk health groups should get vaccinated but low-risk health groups as well.
“In my opinion, it is very important–even for the low risk health groups—to get their flu vaccine. Mainly because the flu is going to be so widespread, we worry about those folks who catch it spreading it to others. When you get the flu vaccine, you’re not only prepping it so you don’t get it, you are also helping prevent the spread of it amongst others you come in contact with,” says Webb.
Quadrivalent is the vaccine Webb is recommending his patients to take, a vaccine that protects against four strains of the flu virus.
Webb also recommends staying away from the nasal spray flu vaccine called FluMist. The CDC has found that FluMist has been ineffective against particular strains of the flu since 2013, and should not be taken this season.
Of course, there are always controversies behind the flu vaccine.
For example, many of the vaccines contain mercury through a preservative called thimerosal. Thimerosal contains ethylmercury, an active agent which prevents contamination between larger volumes of vaccines. The main controversy with this preservative is the ongoing study of links between mercury intake and certain health issues, specifically autism.
Webb says he believes that these controversies have not been proven to be correct.