As the season changes, many people take preventive measures to protect themselves from the seasonal flu or influenza.
While seasonal flu is very common, one of the easiest ways to protect yourself from getting influenza is to get a shot of the annual flu vaccine.
A flu vaccine is typically administered either through a vaccine shot or through nasal drops.
Getting a flu shot can help reduce your chances of getting the flu by at least 60%. However, you may experience some side effects of the flu vaccine.
Though most of the side effects reported are mild, there may be some severe reactions to the flu vaccine, too.
Therefore, you must know what to expect while getting a flu vaccine.
In this article, we’ll discuss some of the most common reactions when having a flu vaccine.
As your body reacts to the vaccine, some of the most common symptoms that you’re likely to experience are headaches accompanied by fatigue.
Since headaches can make your entire body react and make you feel sick, it’s advisable to contact your doctor if a headache or migraine occurs after getting a flu vaccine.
Based on your situation, the doctor can then prescribe some medication.
However, whether a painkiller should be taken or not is still a debatable topic.
Therefore, it’s advisable to take any medication for flu vaccination side effects only after consulting your doctor.
In rare cases, people who have to get the flu vaccine may experience Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS). GBS is a neurological condition that affects the nerve cells, causing muscle weakness and, in extreme cases, paralysis.
To know more about Guillain-Barre syndrome, check https://www.vaccineinjuryhelpcenter.com/flu-vaccine-guillain-barre-reactions-flu-vaccine/.
However, GBS is likely to occur in people who may have already had GBS in the past. If you have a history of GBS, make sure to tell your doctor before getting the flu vaccine.
Talking to your doctor will help you determine whether the vaccine is safe for you or not.
Dizziness and Fainting
One of the most common symptoms of getting a flu vaccine is dizziness and fainting. However, it has been reported that nearly all vaccination reports have accounts of people fainting after getting vaccinated.
Also, some people may experience fainting and dizziness for a day or two after getting the flu vaccine and then the symptoms will gradually fade away.
To avoid feeling dizzy while getting vaccinated, you may take a few preventive measures to avoid feeling dizzy like sitting down while taking the shot or having a snack before you go for your vaccination.
Though fever isn’t a very common symptom of flu vaccination, many people do get a low-grade fever after getting their flu shots.
This mild fever often goes away within a day or two. If the fever persists, you may consider taking medication.
However, it’s always ideal to consult your doctor since experts suggest that taking medication can affect the effectiveness of the vaccine.
In many cases, people who experience high fever after the vaccination shot are already infected by a seasonal flu virus.
Since most people only go for a last-minute flu vaccination, once the seasonal flu is in full swing, they may have already contracted the fever before getting the vaccine.
Since the flu vaccine takes about two weeks to prepare your immune system, getting the flu right after you get the vaccine is another reason for fever that has nothing to do with the vaccine.
Swelling or Redness at the Injection Site
A reaction on the site of the injection is one of the most common flu vaccine reactions.
However, redness or swelling at the site of injection is often considered a good sign and indicates that your immune system is responding well to the vaccine.
Redness, swelling, or pain at the injection site only lasts for a few days.
Coughing and Sneezing
Coughing and sneezing is a common symptom for those who go for the nasal spray administration of the flu vaccine.
While a nasal spray vaccine can remove the symptoms caused by the injection, like redness or pain at the site of injection, it can lead to coughing and sneezing.
However, these symptoms are likely to go away within a few days.
It should be noted that a nasal spray vaccine shouldn’t be administered for those with asthma or wheezing.
Some of the other symptoms of nasal spray vaccination are abdominal pain, diarrhea, typically in children, and sore throat.
A flu vaccine that’s administered with a nasal spray can cause sore throat as a side effect.
You’re likely to experience sore throat right after the administration of the nasal spray vaccination.
This symptom is likely to subside within a few days of taking the vaccination.
Severe Allergic Reactions
Though severe allergic reactions aren’t very common for a flu vaccine, it may happen within a few hours after taking the vaccination.
People experience severe allergic reactions to the flu vaccination due to its components like gelatin, egg protein, or other antibiotics.
Some of the common signs of severe allergic reactions may include dizziness, swelling, increased heart rate, trouble breathing, and weakness.
If anyone experiences severe allergic reactions to a flu vaccine, it should be treated as an emergency and the doctor should be contacted urgently.
Make sure to go to the emergency room if you face any severe allergic reactions.
While getting a flu vaccine may be crucial for some people, like pregnant women and older adults, it may not be completely safe for those who have had strong allergic reactions to the flu vaccine in the past or those who have the Guillain-Barré syndrome.
Therefore, it's crucial to consult your doctor before deciding to take the flu vaccination. Doing so will help you avoid any complicated issues.
Redness or swelling in the site of injection, low-grade fever, or dizziness may be some of the common and mild symptoms of getting a flu vaccination.
However, if serious symptoms like allergic reactions or Guillain-Barré syndrome occur, make sure to immediately contact your doctor and visit the emergency room as soon as possible.