I went to the doctor for a regular check-up awhile back and was asked if I had received the flu shot yet this year. I said it had been since college since I had last gotten a flu shot. (Which by the way made me realize that was over 10 years ago! Dang, I’m old!) It was suggested I get the flu shot just to be safe. Of course the obedient patient I am thought about going to get the shot but the person that is very afraid of needles decided “ah, what the heck…I don’t need to go get that. I haven’t had the actual flu in YEARS (knock on wood). I am fine.”
Fast forward to today. A lady in our office and her family have had a terrible case of the flu for a number of days now. She didn’t come in the office Monday or Tuesday because she was getting sick ALL THE TIME but she is here today. I have my own opinions on coming into the office when you have been sick and may still be contagious which I will keep to myself, sort of, but it made me think….hey should I be getting the flu shot?
Every time I think about getting the flu shot I think about the following:
“I haven’t had the flu in years, I will be fine.”
“I think flu shots interfere with our bodies natural immune system.”
“I hate needles.”
“How do I know if I am even protected from the right strain if I come in contact with someone who has a different strain of the flu.”
“The flu virus mutates very quickly and changes so it can survive, so how does the flu shot protect against those changes.”
“My immune system is healthy (knock on wood) and my body is designed to naturally fight off viruses, so why should I get it.”
“It seems like when I hear people get the flu shot they end up getting sick anyways.”
“I wash my hands regularly and take vitamins, that should be enough right.”
“I don’t want to get a shot, please don’t make me!”
I think people have very different opinions on the flu virus and flu shots, but I was just looking to see what others thought so to learn more about the flu shot. I mean I know the difference between the shot and the nasal and I understand the idea of the flu shot, but in regards to is it “worth” it – well I am just not sure. I am all for other vaccines, but the flu one I go back and forth on whether I think I need it at this point in my life. I am young enough that my immune system is still strong (knock on wood) and I wash my hands a lot and try to be careful.
So the question/s:
- What are your thoughts on getting the flu shot?
- Is it necessary to get the shot?
- Are there times in your life where it is more necessary than other times?
- Is there a time when you wouldn’t get the shot?
Please share your thoughts on this. I realize the flu season is coming to a close, but being around someone who had the flu made me think about it more.