Frequently Asked Questions
Each year thousands of people die or are hospitalized from influenza. Most susceptible are young children, people 65 and older, pregnant women, and people with certain health conditions. Influenza is easy to spread, and easier to prevent. By getting the flu shot you protect yourself from influenza, and also avoid spreading influenza to others you come in contact with.
The flu shots administered at Foodland Flu Clinics is an inactivated (“dead”) vaccine, which means that you cannot get the flu from this flu shot.
It can take up to 2 weeks for protection to develop after receiving the flu shot. From the time you receive your flu shot, protection can last up to one year. Keep in mind that you are protected from only the flu strains that are included in the flu shot that season.
Every season, scientists predict influenza strains most likely to infect people. These strains are included in that seasons flu shot, and may change from year to year. In recent years, there has been a combination of three strains including the H1N1 strain.
Not all flu shots are the same. Some flu shots do contain the mercury preservative thimerosal. However, the flu shots administered at Foodland Flu Clinics are Thimerosal-free flu vaccines and do not contain any mercury preservative.
As soon as it becomes available in your community. In recent years, this has been as early as August.
Yes, it is okay to receive a flu shot if it has been less than one year since your last flu vaccine because the combination of strains included in the flu vaccine may change every season.
Usually October through May, but here in Hawaii we may experience a year round flu season due to tourism and climate.
Current influenza vaccines contain various amounts of egg protein, so having an allergy to eggs may cause a severe reaction. Please consult with your doctor before receiving the flu shot.
As with any other medication, there are possible side effects from the vaccine. Although the potential for serious side effects is small, most common problems are mild and last for 1-2 days. These include soreness, swelling, redness at site of injection; hoarseness; fever, aches, headache, fatigue.