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Author Topic: Scared to get the flu shot  (Read 515 times)

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Offline venerye

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Re: Scared to get the flu shot
« Reply #15 on: January 15, 2014, 10:47:59 PM »
I don't get a flu shot every year.  It's a cost/benefit analysis every autumn... and this time I found myself pregnant and going to be in my 3rd trimester through the worst of the flu season, and with two older kids often bringing something home from public school... so I went ahead and got it.  I didn't want to, because I don't react to the shot well and I never have.  I experience flu-like symptoms for at least 3 days.  It really knocks me out; I'm completely exhausted, I have body aches, my temp is a little elevated.  And my arm is sore for over a week.  Being a hypo has taught me that feeling symptoms isn't always bad, and symptoms don't always mean something's wrong.  It helps me not to panic when I think about it like this... the vaccine introduces an unfamiliar invader and my body is reacting to it in a way similar to live, active flu -- so of course I might feel symptoms similar to those that happen with real flu.  I know the vax doesn't make me immune in that I'll not catch the flu at all, but it gives my body a heads up that those strains exist and have to be attacked immediately.

At this point in the flu season, I can't tell you how relieved I am that I got my shot months ago.  I'm heavily pregnant and in the most high risk age group for this particular flu that is circulating now.  I might get sick enough to be hospitalized, but that flu shot just might make the difference between life and death.  Even if I weren't pregnant, knowing that this year's flu targets people my age, I would probably go ahead and get my shot.  I am trying to do the best I can with hygeine and isolating myself and keeping healthy and all those other things I do in an active flu year (last time I had it was 2009 and it was awful).  The hardest thing to control is the panic that wants to take over sometimes.  Stress has a negative effect on the immune system.
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Offline Chantelle

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Re: Scared to get the flu shot
« Reply #16 on: January 16, 2014, 12:36:36 PM »
Venerye, thank you for your post.

I hear where you are coming from and I definitely feel the same way. I'm afraid that all the anxiety I put myself through by worrying about this dreaded flu will weaken my immune system and make me more vulnerable. I guess if I go into it expecting that I may have symptoms that are normal after getting the shot I may be able to relax a little more.

After hearing that I am able to protect my baby through my breastmilk (by passing on antibodies) I feel that at least I can protect my son without him getting the shot. Between not sleeping well (my son is not a good sleeper!) and being anxious I feel very vulnerable. I know if I do get the shot at least I can relax a little and feel comfortable leaving my home.
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Offline Chantelle

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Re: Scared to get the flu shot
« Reply #17 on: January 16, 2014, 04:58:22 PM »
Uugh. So I talked to my husband this afternoon and he thinks we should go get the shot after work since it's being offered in our neighbourhood. As much as I want to I'm really scared to actually get it! I'm trying not to be anxious but it's so hard not to freak out. I think I've read too much on the internet honestly.
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Offline kazoo

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Re: Scared to get the flu shot
« Reply #18 on: January 16, 2014, 08:10:00 PM »
I got the flu shot 8 days ago after several people my age (50) died around this area from H1N1, and even some much younger. I usually don't get the shot, but this is a nasty flu and it affects all ages, not just the very young or very old.  I also had never gotten a vaccine for H1N1 before, and so I probably had no immunity.  I don't usually get the flu, which is why I don't usually bother with a shot.  However, this year seems unusual.

My arm was sore for maybe 2 days.

I feel fine and had no side effects other than the soreness.
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Offline Chantelle

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Re: Scared to get the flu shot
« Reply #19 on: January 17, 2014, 12:18:24 AM »
Thanks for the reassurance Kazoo. I chickened out of going for a shot this afternoon and I'm starting to regret it. My anxiety was definitely high and I was in a bit of a state just driving towards the clinic. I convinced my husband not to take me but I'm starting to think I should have just gotten it over with. Hearing stories about the flu affected all sorts of people is down right scary.
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Offline Sunlover

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Re: Scared to get the flu shot
« Reply #20 on: January 17, 2014, 11:59:31 AM »
I am 55 years old, been getting a flu shot every year since I was 10.   Never had the flu and never had an ill effect from the shot.  My dad is 80, he has been getting flu shots even longer. 
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