Should I get my flu shot?

The flu (also known as influenza) is most common during fall and winter; flu cases start becoming common in October. For that reason, it is a good time to consider getting a flu shot to keep yourself and those around you safe.

Why should I get a flu shot?

The CDC lists several reasons why you might want to get the flu shot:

  1. A flu shot lowers your risk of getting sick with the flu by 40-60%. 
  2. A flu shot will reduce how severe your symptoms are if you do get sick.
  3. A flu shot reduces your risk of getting hospitalized with the flu.
  4. Getting the flu shot can help to protect your family and friends.

The flu shot is very good at reducing your risk for illness and hospitalization. For example, the 2019-2020 flu vaccine prevented approximately 7.5 million flu illnesses and 3.7 million flu-related medical visits. And people who got the shot had a 31% lower risk of death from flu.

Is it safe to get a flu shot and a COVID shot together?

Yes! Getting both the flu vaccine and COVID vaccine is safe. The two vaccines will not affect each one another because they are targeting different viruses. (Helpful tip: Get the shots in different arms to reduce soreness.)

However, if you have a history of anaphylaxis or severe allergic reaction to injectable drugs, you should consider getting the vaccines on different days. Talk to your doctor to make a plan that’s right for you.

Last update: October 25, 2021, 5:30pm ET

Science review: SGB, JAB