AS WE approach winter, have you thought about getting a flu injection?
Or do you believe the myth that if you have a flu shot when you do not have it, you are inviting the illness That is simply not true!
According to World Health Organisation, the injected flu vaccine contains only the dead virus, which cannot infect your body.
If you feel achy or slightly feverish, it is a normal reaction of the immune system to the vaccine, and generally lasts only a day or two.
Waheed Abdurahman, a pharmacist at Clicks, told SunHealth that the best time to get your flu vaccine is before the flu season sets in.
The earlier the better, as it takes 10 to 12 days for your body to develop antibodies to protect you from the flu and build up your immunity.
“Even if you had the flu vaccine last year, it’s important to get vaccinated every year because flu strains change annually and the World Health Organisation updates the vaccine accordingly to ward off the most dangerous influenza strains.
“It’s difficult to predict the severity and length of the season in South Africa, but it is important to get the flu shot as soon as the vaccine becomes available to protect you and those around you,” he said.
Unlike a common cold, flu can cause severe illness, and life-threatening complications in the elderly, young children and people suffering from diabetes, asthma, chronic heart, lung or kidney diseases.
For more information about influenza visit www.who.int/influenza/spotlight/5-myths-about-the-flu-vaccine.