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Is the flu shot worth it?

Kasy Long talks about her experience in getting a flu shot for the season. (photo/

As I sat in CVS Pharmacy's waiting line to receive my flu shot over fall break, I questioned the importance of the shot. Many people create opinions about the flu shot, saying it is not as effective as the media portrays it to be.

After researching information about the shot, my opinion has changed completely. It is definitely beneficial to receive the flu shot, but it may just not help people the way they want to be helped. 

The flu shot only prevents one type of flu, the respiratory influenza. It doesn't prevent the stomach flu, the kind that everyone hates.

Then people question, "Why do I get the shot then if it doesn't even prevent the flu I don't want?"

I admit that I had this same question before I researched the respiratory influenza to see how dangerous it is to my health. The respiratory illness is caused by influenza viruses, and it is very contagious.

It can cause mild to severe symptoms, including fever, cough, sore throat, headache, runny nose, muscle aches and fatigue. The respiratory flu does not have symptoms of vomiting, but that is the reason why so many people turn away from the flu shot.

However, serious outcomes of the flu infection can result in hospitalization or death. In the United States, from 1976 to 2006, approximately 3,000 to 49,000 people died from the respiratory flu every year. I don't know about you, but I am not ready to become included in that number.

While shots are not particularly my favorite thing to have, it is necessary to get the flu shot because of the dangerous risks of the respiratory flu. It is not difficult to get the shot. It is only a shot.

I would rather get a shot and a Band-Aide on my arm than to be sick in my bed for a week. No matter what people believe, the flu shot is important and it's definitely worth it. It may not prevent the type of flu that everyone hates, but it does help our health.

Whether you believe the flu shot is effective or not, consider getting the shot for this flu season. It is better to be safe than sorry.

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