The flu season has only just begun, but you may already be vulnerable to catching the virus and developing symptoms. The easiest way to prevent the virus is by getting an annual flu shot, which makes you immune. If you haven’t gotten your flu shot yet and are on the fence about needing one, check out these four reasons to learn why the annual vaccine is important.

 

The flu shot is the most effective way to prevent the influenza virus and its side effects

 

The flu virus often reaches epidemic status in the United States each winter, with millions of people developing symptoms including nausea, aches, chills, fever, and congestion. Depending on the case, your symptoms may be severe enough to require a doctor’s visit for treatment, not to mention sick days away from work or school. The flu vaccine reduces the risk of catching the virus by over 60 percent, eliminating the possibility of severe discomfort and missed time and productivity. By getting the flu shot early in the season, you allow yourself time to have it take effect before the first cases are reported in your area.

 

The influenza virus can be more serious than sniffles and a fever

 

Over 200,000 people throughout the country will be hospitalized with flu symptoms between now and the end of spring, according to a report by the CDC. The virus can also be fatal: though the number of strictly-flu-related deaths is unknown, the number is thought to be between 3,000 and 50,000 for a thirty-year period ending in 2006. Depending on several factors, you may be at a higher risk for more serious symptoms and complications. These factors include:

  • Age
  • Presence of chronic conditions
  • Compromised immune systems due to autoimmune disease or cancer
  • Pregnancy 

The flu vaccine from last year won’t be able to protect you this year

 

 

The influenza virus is constantly mutating and evolving in order to evade immunity. Each year, the flu shot is designed differently to protect against what doctors and scientists have determined to be the common strain throughout the season. In addition to protecting against a new composition of the virus, the flu shot loses its effectiveness through the year, wearing off after about six months. The only way to stay protected year after year is by getting a new, updated flu shot each year in the late summer or early fall. 

 

The flu shot is available for low costs to you

 

Most health insurance plans cover the flu shot under preventive care. Check your insurance information to see if it needs to be administered within network. If you are self-paying or do not visit within network, AFC Urgent Care Norwalk provides low-cost vaccinations to walk-in patients seven days a week. 

Walk-In Flu Shots in Norwalk, CT

If you are interested in getting your flu shot, visit AFC Urgent Care Norwalk today! Our center is open seven days a week and walk-in patients are always accepted. You can reserve your spot by checking in online! For questions about the flu shot, please call 203-845-9100.