Story by: Norton Healthcare on November 2, 2022
Getting the flu shot earlier in the season provides some protection through the spring, and since the vaccine takes a couple weeks to build up antibodies, it’s a good idea to get it before the virus is spreading.
Getting the flu vaccine provides up to about 60% protection for your body, meaning it will decrease your chance of getting severely sick and decrease the chance of needing medical treatment for the flu. The vaccine helps give your body information on how to fight off the infection. Getting a flu vaccine also helps protect the people around you.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that you get your flu shot by the end of October each year. But if you missed that time frame, it’s not too late.
Getting your flu shot provides some protection for about six months, so early in the season is best. But it’s never too late.
Get a flu shot
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Don’t put it off if you’re already at your health care provider’s office or your pharmacy.
The flu vaccine provides its protection for about six months, according to Monalisa M. Tailor, M.D., an internal medicine physician with Norton Community Medical Associates.
“The vaccine takes about two weeks to build up the antibodies in your system, so you don’t want to delay it too far into the season,” Dr. Tailor said.
While the viruses that cause the flu each year tend to mutate and change through the season from the time the vaccine is developed, the flu vaccine typically reduces the risk of needing medical care for flu by about 40% to 60%.
If you are eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine or a booster shot, it’s safe to get both at once and in separate arms if possible, according to the CDC.
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