A flu vaccination is still the best way to guard against the flu but some people should get it and some shouldn't. If your defenses are low, the CDC highly recommends you get the shot.

Who Should Get Vaccinated

  • Children between 6 months and 5 years old
  • Women who will be pregnant during flu season
  • People over 50
  • Anyone with a chronic condition such as diabetes, asthma, heart problems or blood disorders
  • Anyone with a weakened immune system from HIV/AIDS, long-term steroid treatment, or cancer treatment with X-rays or drugs
  • Residents of long-term care facilities such as nursing homes
  • Those who work in health care, take care of elderly people or care for children up to 5 years old should also get the shot. If you have a medical condition that could cause higher risks from the flu, then you should get one too.

    Everyone else needs to just assess their situation and decide. If you work in the community, live in a dorm, travel to the Southern Hemisphere between April & September or anytime to the tropics or anywhere with tour groups, then you might consider it. Anyone who wants to reduce the chances of catching or spreading the flu – go ahead and get one unless you fall into the “don’t get a shot group”.

    Don't Get Vaccinated If:

  • You have any life threatening allergies
  • You have a severe egg allergy (the vaccine is grown in eggs)
  • You have ever had Guillain-Barre Syndrome (actually, you may be able to get one but ask your doctor first)
  • You are ill at the time the vaccine is administered
  • Even if you get the shot, it is not 100% effective, nor does it work against all flu strains. The vaccine researchers just don't know what kind of bug will show up every year despite their best forecasts. Only about 1/3 of the population even get the shot.

    Whether you get vaccinated or not, everyone should try to avoid spreading germs. Here are 10 Easy Ways to Prevent Colds & Flu and some Cold & Flu Essentials to give you a fighting chance.

    Take care.