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How the Flu Shot Can Help You Stay Healthy This Winter

A hand holding up a card that says “flu vaccination.”

While the entire world has been swept up in the roll out of the COVID-19 vaccine to end the pandemic once and for all, it’s also worth noting that we should prepare ourselves for the colder days to comeand the flu viruses that linger in the air!

Each year in Canada, about 5 to 10 percent of adults and 20 to 30 percent of children are infected with influenza in the late fall and throughout the winter. This contagious infection affects the nose, throat, and lungs in the form of fever, cough, and muscle aches.

This flu season, The Boardwalk Pharmacy is offering your best defence against the virus – vaccination; the ultimate solution that shields you from the illness and its potential complications. 

Discover all the benefits of flu shots right here. Give your immune system a boost this winter so you can enjoy the holiday season free from influenza.

The Benefits of Flu Shots for the Winter   

Catching the flu is quite common from December to February. From a mild cough to conditions that require hospitalization, the virus can cause a variety of symptoms. Here are all the benefits of flu shots: 

Flu Shots Strengthen Your Immune System 

This one is a given, but for emphasis, it is the primary purpose of the flu vaccine. During peak season of the flu viruses, the vaccine has proven to reduce the risk of getting sick. In turn, this minimizes your chances of having to visit your doctor for a consultation. 

Flu Shots Help Protect High-Risk Individuals    

Vaccines can protect people from every age group from getting sick, but flu shots for seniors, children, and people with chronic health conditions are especially important. According to research, the flu shot has been proven to work as a preventive agent for people with heart conditions. 

Important note: Consult your doctor regarding your health conditions before getting any type of new vaccine or medication.  

Flu Shots Protect Pregnant Women  

Pregnant women who receive the flu shot protect both themselves and their babies from contracting illnesses. Pregnancy is precious, but it isn’t exactly a walk in the park. Luckily, it’ll be a safe and healthy process with the right precautions, such as the flu vaccine. 

Flu Shots Can Save the Lives of Children

Children may have a ton of energy, but their immune systems are not as strong and efficient as that of adults. Their digestive, reproductive, central nervous, and immune systems are still developing, and are at higher risk due to contact with external sources. Children often put random things in their mouths, share their toys with other children, and love to play outdoors. The more contact they have with foreign objects, high-touch surfaces, and other people, the more susceptible they are to getting sick with the flu.

For these reasons, it is of utmost importance to get your children vaccinated.  

Flu Shots Help Protect People Around You  

Getting vaccinated means that you are protecting yourself and the people around you from the flu virus. This pertains especially to senior citizens and babies who are too young to get vaccinated. 

If more people get the flu shot, we can actually prevent the spread and mutation of various types of viruses.  

Flu vaccines next to a family figure

Side Effects from Flu Shots 

Common side effects from flu shots include the following:

  • Soreness, redness, and swelling where the shot was administered
  • Fever
  • Muscle aches
  • Nausea
  • Headaches

 These flu vaccine side effects generally subside within a few days and shouldn’t be a cause for concern. 

The Flu Versus the Cold 

It’s wintertime, so coming down with a cough, a sneeze, or a slight fever isn’t much of a surprise, but how can you tell if you have the flu or the common cold?

At times, it can be difficult to distinguish the flu from the common cold, as they are both contagious respiratory illnesses. However, you can find their primary difference in the fact that they are caused by different viruses. The flu is caused by influenza viruses alone, whereas the common cold is caused by various viruses, such as seasonal coronaviruses, parainfluenza, and rhinoviruses. 

Since the flu and common cold share multiple symptoms, only medical tests can determine which is which. However, a sure-fire sign is that the flu typically induces fevers, chills, coughs, nasal congestion, a sore throat, muscle aches, headaches, and fatigue. On the flip side, cold symptoms are usually more on the milder side and are predominantly characterized by a stuffy nose and a sore throat.

Whether it’s the fearsome winter flu or just the common cold, you can rely on the flu shot and proper medication to fortify your immune system. 

A person receiving a flu shot from a medical worker

Flu Shots Near Me 

Now that you’re more familiar with the benefits of flu shots, you’re probably wondering where you can find a flu shot near you. At The Boardwalk Pharmacy, located in Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario, we offer comprehensive pharmaceutical services for you and your whole family, including flu shot inoculation. Flu shots are available to those between the ages of 5 and 64 years old.

This winter, give yourself and your family the gift of perfect health by getting flu shots. Book your appointment here! 

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