Doctor debunks two common flu vaccine myths - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

Doctor debunks two common flu vaccine myths

Source: MGN Online Source: MGN Online
BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) -

The misery and pain of the flu can last for days.

Having studied influenza and flu vaccines for years, Dr. Diana Noah knows there are millions of people who refuse to get a flu shot for a variety of reasons. She spoke with FOX6 News Tuesday to seperate the myths from the facts.

She says a person's concerns often start with safety.

"Really, it is very safe and there are decades of safety data that go into the flu vaccinations," Noah says.

For example, she points to the concern of mercury-based components in vaccines.

"There are actually vaccines that do not have those. So you have options," Noah said.

Another myth: that you can catch the flu from the vaccine. There are two main types: the flu shot and the flu mist. The shot normally has fewer side effects but Noah says all vaccines can cause some discomfort.

"We forget almost every vaccination comes with it a low grade fever, my arm hurts, that's the same with the flu vaccine itself," she said.

She adds that you can get vaccinated throughout the winter but says to keep in mind that it takes about two weeks to build up immunities.

"A lot of times the peak is right around the holidays and no one likes being sick at the holidays," Noah points out.

When it comes to flu cases, Alabama is one of only two states already seeing cases spread all across the state. But even if all those reasons don't persuade you to get vaccinated, Noah says if you don't do it for yourself, do it for your community.

"Do it for the grandparents, for the immune compromised, for children with asthma. You're really doing a public service by getting vaccinated," she said.

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