#FluVaccineByHalloween: Power To Protect New Jersey · NJ Department of Health · CDC.gov · College Flu Challenge · Vaccine Finder
Every flu season is different, and flu can affect people differently. But during typical flu seasons, millions of people get flu, hundreds of thousands of people are hospitalized and thousands to tens of thousands of people die from flu-related causes. Flu can mean a few days of feeling bad and missing work, school, or family events, or it can result in more serious illness.
Complications of flu can include bacterial pneumonia, ear infections, sinus infections and worsening of chronic medical conditions, such as congestive heart failure, asthma, or diabetes. An annual seasonal flu vaccine is the best way to help reduce the risk of getting flu and any of its potentially serious complications.
Vaccination has been shown to have many benefits including reducing the risk of flu illnesses, hospitalizations and even the risk of flu-related death. While some people who get a flu vaccine may still get sick with influenza, flu vaccination has been shown in several studies to reduce severity of illness.
For most people who need only one dose of flu vaccine for the season, September and October are generally good times to be vaccinated against flu. Ideally, everyone should be vaccinated by the end of October.
A flu vaccine is needed every year for two reasons. First, a person’s immune protection from vaccination declines over time. Second, because flu viruses are constantly changing, the composition of flu vaccines is reviewed annually, and vaccines are updated to protect against the viruses that research indicates will be most common during the upcoming flu season. For the best protection, everyone 6 months and older should get vaccinated annually.
It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop in the body and provide protection against influenza virus infection. That’s why it’s best to get vaccinated before influenza viruses start to spread in your community.