Flu shots’ lifesaving effects cannot be ignored


In time for flu season, Target’s CVS pharmacy promotes a deal to receive a $5 coupon alongside a vaccination. Places like Target allow individuals to have options apart from their doctors’ offices to get the shots. Photo by Grace Chang.

As the weather cools down, on-the-go tissue packs begin to emerge in bags, pockets and jackets. Teachers are required to replace their constantly emptied Kleenex boxes on a daily basis. Several empty desks and the occasional break of a cough or sneeze all point to one event: the start of flu season.

While people begin to decide whether or not they will receive the flu shot, some will abstain because of rumors surrounding the shot’s legitimacy.

During the 2017-18 flu season, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that only 46.8 percent of people in the U.S. received influenza vaccinations. This is a serious issue caused by myths and misunderstanding.

It’s essential to be educated with concrete statistics and facts before declaring flu vaccines unnecessary or harmful. Irrational fears or speculations must be disregarded, since those are more than often clouded with misconception.

According to the CDC, last year’s flu season left 180 children and teens dead, and nearly all were unvaccinated. With even healthy people contracting the illness, it’s clear that the virus spreads across quickly. True, students may have a strong immune system. But vaccines do more than protect you. They prevent the spread to others who are vulnerable, including those with chronic diseases, pregnant women, and very small children. The shot will protect both the recipient and the people surrounding them.

There is no doubt that risks are involved, but it is no different than the minor warnings of over-the-counter drugs. The possible soreness resulting does not match the extremities that a flu episode can reach. Parents should consider this simple form of prevention from a common but sometimes deadly illness. They would prevent the possibility of having to stay home from work to look over their children, and fewer students will miss important class time. The cause and effects of this cycle only makes the flu shot more essential.

Even though the virus injected is inactivated or killed, the body will still create immunity against this foreign invader. But because this germ is dead, the likelihood of contracting the flu from the shot is lowered. ”

The vaccines do have flaws, so it is important for everyone to research them to clear any misunderstanding or concerns. Especially with fears involving miscarriages or defects, parents should truly consider the pros and cons of both options prior to absolutely rejecting vaccinations. If it still isn’t convincing enough, students should encourage and persuade their parents to go for a shot. While abstaining can guarantee no risks of vaccine-related pregnancy issues, greater exposure to the influenza virus can also result in similar consequences. Taking definitive action to protecting an unborn child is more important.

The upcoming flu season has yet to begin, so these vaccines were created to the best of their predictions. It is unknown whether or not an epidemic like last year’s will occur again, but precautions are absolutely necessary.

Common myths, including a risk of Alzheimer’s disease, have already been debunked by the Scientific Daily and other researchers. They are not a reason to avoid the flu vaccine.

Flu shots are available at typical hospital facilities, but they are also provided at locations including Walgreens and CVS pharmacies (sometimes located at Target). Most insurance companies will cover the costs for the shot. For those who do not have health insurance, they can reach out to local health centers or state health departments regarding a low-cost or free shot.

With the choice of receiving that one injection, a tremendous difference can be made in both one’s and others’ well-beings. Vaccinations are necessary. Do not ignore them.