Should I get the flu jab every year?
The best way to help protect yourself and others from flu is to have the flu jab every year. Over time, protection from the flu jab gradually decreases and flu strains can change, which means last year’s jab may not protect you from this year’s strains. There may also be an increase in flu cases this autumn due to the lack of exposure to the flu virus last winter driven by reduced social interaction.
How effective is the flu vaccine?
Whilst no vaccine is 100% effective, having a flu jab will help protect you from catching flu and passing it on to others. After your jab, it usually takes around 14-21 days to be protected.
The flu jab and COVID-19
It’s important to consider having the flu jab because:
● if you get flu and COVID-19 at the same time, you’re more likely to become seriously ill
● it will help to reduce pressure on health and social care services
Boots at Longton Exchange offer a flu vaccination service. You can either book in-store or online here – https://www.boots.com/online/pharmacy-services/winter-flu-jab-services
At your appointment, one of the pharmacists will inject the vaccine into your upper arm. As with all medicines, there may be some side effects. The most common side effects include:
● Redness, soreness or bruising at the injection site
● A high temperature, sweating, shivering or feeling unwell
● Headaches, fatigue or dizziness
● Aching muscles or joints
These side effects are usually mild and should disappear on their own in a day or two.
Speak to the pharmacist if you have any questions about the vaccination or possible side effects.
The NHS flu jab is offered free to over 50’s – otherwise, a private jab for over 16’s costs £14.99.