Protect Your Family’s Health With Immunizations Get the Flu Shot…NOT the Flu! Developed By: Stephan Foster, Pharm D, Associate Professor, UT College of Pharmacy and Barbara (Bobbi) Clarke, PhD,RD, Professor, Extension Health Specialist and Co-director for The University of Tennessee Center for Community-based Health Initiatives, UT Extension Service ~ Updated 12/03 ~
Why Get the Flu Shot Every Year? • Highly contagious virus • 1 out of 5 people (20%) get the flu • Affects respiratory system (nose, throat, lungs) • Antibiotics are not effective
Fever Chills Headacheand Body Aches Dry Cough Runny or Stuffy Nose Sore Throat Flu Symptoms
Symptoms Can Be Severe! • Cause extreme fatigue • Last for several days to weeks • Lead to bronchitis and pneumonia • Require hospitalization • Cause death, especially among the elderly
What is the Difference Between a Cold and the Flu? • Cold symptoms occur from the neck up. • Flu symptoms affect the total body.
The Flu Can Be Prevented • Get the flu shot • It is safe and effective • You help those around you by not giving the flu to your family, friends, and co-workers • You decrease time spent away from work due to illness
A flu shot between September and December will protect you from November to April. When Should You Get the Flu Shot?
Important Point You Do NOT Get The Flu from the Flu Shot! The viruses in the vaccine are killed.
Can You Still Get the Flu If You Get the Shot? • It is possible: the flu viruses change often • If you do get it, it usually is milder • It takes 2 weeks to develop protection • You may be exposed before protection develops
Who Should Get the Flu Shot? • Persons 50 years of age and older • Residents of nursing homes or care facilities • Patients with chronic diseases – diabetes, lung disease, heart disease, kidney disease, and others
(continued) Who Should Get the Flu Shot? • Patients with suppressed immune systems • Children between 6 -23 months • All household contacts of children 0 – 23 months of age • Out-of-home caregivers of all children younger than 24 months of age • Children on long-term aspirin treatment • Women who are pregnant during the flu season
(continued) Who Should Get the Flu Shot? • People who may infect high risk populations • Health care workers • Volunteers • Family members • Other groups in close quarters • Students and staff at schools and colleges
(continued) Who Should Get the Flu Shot? Anyone over the age of 6 months who wants to decrease their chances of getting the flu!
Where Can You Get the Flu Shot? • Doctor’s Offices • Clinics • Health Department • Pharmacies • Health Fairs
Who Should Avoid the Flu Shot? • Individuals who: • Have had a severe reaction to the flu shot… not just a sore arm! • Have an allergy to eggs or previous flu vaccines • Are moderately or severely ill at the time…OK if a mild illness
(continued) Who Should Avoid the Flu Shot? • If you are unsure, ask your physician or pharmacist • New medications are available if you cannot take the flu shot
Should Pregnant Women Get the Flu Shot? • The flu shot is recommended for women who will be beyond the first trimester of pregnancy during the influenza season • Women with medical conditions that increase their risk for complications of the flu—should be vaccinated
What About the Nasal-spray Flu Vaccine? Ask your doctor if this vaccine is right for you.
Protect Your Health Get the flu shot every Fall!