About the Flu

What is "the flu"?

"Flu" is short for influenza, a contagious respiratory illness that infects the nose, throat and lungs. It can make you feel awful. 

Anyone can get the flu (even healthy people) and serious problems related to the flu can happen at any age, but some people are a higher risk of developing serious flu-related complications if they get sick. This includes people 65 years and older, people of any age with certain chronic medical conditions such as diabetes, asthma, or heart disease, pregnant women, and young children. 

Severe cases can even lead to death. The best way to protect yourself from getting the flu? Get an annual flu shot.

When is flu season?

The flu season occurs in the fall and winter, but the virus can stay active year-round.

When should I get my Flu Shot?

You should get a flu vaccine before flu begins spreading in your community. It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies that protect against flu to develop in the body. CDC recommends that people get a flu vaccine by the end of October.  Getting vaccinated later, however, can still be beneficial and vaccination should continue to be offered throughout the flu season, even into January or later.

Is the flu virus contagious?

Yes, it is very contagious. You can have the flu for 1 to 4 days before you start feeling sick. This means that you may be able to infect someone else before you even know you have the flu, not just while you are feeling symptoms.

I got my flu shot and I still got sick with the flu. Why?

Flu vaccine effectiveness can vary from year to year as there are many different factors that can contribute to how well the vaccine reduces the risk of illness.  Some people who get vaccinated may still get sick. However, flu vaccination has been shown in some studies to reduce severity of illness in people who get vaccinated but still get sick

Is one flu vaccine recommended over another?

The CDC doesn't recommend 1 vaccine over another. The important thing is to get vaccinated as soon as possible. Call us at 718-282-7660 and learn about your options and which vaccination may be appropriate for you.

Why do some people not feel well after getting the flu shot?

  • The flu shot can cause mild side effects that are sometimes mistaken for flu. For example, people sometimes experience a sore arm where the shot was given. The needle stick may also cause some soreness at the injection site. Rarely, people who get the flu shot have fever, muscle pain, and feelings of discomfort or weakness. If experienced at all, these effects usually last for 1-2 days after vaccination, and are much less severe than actual flu illness.

For more information visit:

Text should be “more information about the flu shot” https://www.cdc.gov/flu/protect/keyfacts.htm 

text should be “Benefits of the Flu Shot” (https://www.cdc.gov/flu/prevent/vaccine-benefits.htm)

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