It’s that time of year again – flu season. As it has in years past, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is recommending that everyone six months of age and older get vaccinated to protect against the flu, and to help reduce the spreading of the virus to others.

Why the yearly push? Influenza is a very serious disease that can lead to hospitalization and, in the most serious cases, even death.

Although you’ve likely been told countless times about the importance of getting a flu shot, sometimes it takes a little extra motivation to make time in your busy schedule to get vaccinated.

If you’ve been on the fence about whether or not to get a flu shot this year, we want to offer you four important reasons as to why you should get vaccinated.

Forget the myth – Contrary to popular belief, you can’t get the flu from a flu shot. Once a person is vaccinated, it will take about two weeks for the antibodies to develop in the body and protect against the flu. What this means is that if you happen to become sick right after your flu shot, you were already in the process of getting ill. The shot does not and will not make you sick.

Save your sick days – Although the occasional day off of work is nice, it’s never enjoyable when you’re home sick with the flu. This illness usually lasts a few days if not a week or more before you’re feeling 100 percent again. So protect yourself and your coworkers from the flu and save those paid time off days for something that you actually enjoy, rather than spending them at home sick in bed!

Protect the little ones – As we mentioned before, everyone six months and older should get vaccinated. Babies under six months aren’t able to get a flu shot, which makes them more susceptible to becoming ill. That’s why it’s imperative for parents and those who are around infants to get vaccinated in order to protect these young children from getting the flu.

It likely won’t hurt your wallet – Flu shots are commonly a standard preventive health care offering. The vast majority of insurance providers allow their subscribers the opportunity to get a free flu shot, as long as the person/facility administering the vaccination is within the subscriber’s network. Before you get a flu shot, check with your insurance provider to be sure that vaccinations are covered under your policy.

So, take note of these four reasons as to why you should get vaccinated. If you’re still in need of a flu shot, the St. Barnabas Medical Center is offering vaccinations with no appointments necessary Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Learn more here.

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