Flu season is coming, and it is time to get vaccinated.
Overton County Health Department Nursing Supervisor Megan Reeder said there is no reason to not get the flu shot.
“Why not?” Reeder said. “If you can protect yourself from illness why would you not protect yourself? I liken to a seat belt in that every once in a while a seat belt can causes some bruises and some problems in a car wreck, but at the end of the day, it will more than likely save your life.”
Reeder said that you can get the flu anytime of year, but going into the fall and winter months is when the chances are highest. Flu activity typically starts to ramp up in October then peaks between December and February. Last year, the flu season began early with a large number of serious cases.
“We do know it takes a little while for the flu vaccine to take effect in the body,” Reeder said. “Your body has to respond and build up immunity from that flu vaccine and it takes a good two weeks for full immunity to happen. We would like to recommend everyone starting now to get the flu vaccine.”
Reeder said the flu vaccine is safe, and as long as you have not had any previous adverse reaction. She said everyone should get the flu shot.
“The flu vaccine is an inactivated vaccine, so it is not a live virus. A lot of people think that the flu vaccine will give you the flu. That is incorrect. That’s a myth it will not.”
Reeder said if you do not get the vaccine you could get fever, cough, congestion, headaches, and body aches and the illness lasts longer than the average cold. She said vulnerable adults, like children and the elderly, could be hospitalize with the flu and even die.
Reeder said to head to your local health department to get your flu shot and it will not take less than 10 minutes.
“Everyone in the Upper Cumberland Region, which spans for 14 counties, I can attest for,” Reeder said. “They all have a flu fast track, so any health department that you are near just stop on in and get your flu shot.”