It’s that time of year: Flu shots are back

If you haven’t heard or seen advertisements for flu shots, you will soon. Flu season officially begins in just a few weeks and local pharmacies and clinics are preparing to help you stay healthy.

Flu shots are now available at many local pharmacies. It may seem early, but now is a perfect time to get the flu shot because you’ll reduce your chances of catching the flu. The flu shot’s effectiveness should last from now through the end of the flu season.

Each year, the flu shot’s ingredients are matched up to the flu strains that are going around in other parts of the world, so it’s not always the same immunization year after year.

And if you’re concerned about getting sick from the flu shot, pharmacist Benjamin Washam at Sheldon’s pharmacy said that’s not something you should have to worry about since the flu shot is usually an inactive virus which contains “parts of the virus” but not the complete virus.

The body’s immune system responds to a flu shot as part of the process of building an immunity to the flu, which is why people sometimes feel fatigued or achy for a few hours after getting a flu shot.

Washam stresses those symptoms are not actually the flu. Washam also recommends taking vitamin c and supplements like elderberry to give the immune system more of a boost.

Washing your hands often and avoiding others who may be sick are two other good ways to stay healthy. And, if you’re the one feeling a little ill, you might want to stay home for the day.