The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention strongly recommends the shot for children younger than 5, adults 50 and older, pregnant women and those with medical conditions, as they are at high risk for developing complications if they catch the flu.
Check with your healthcare provider or visit a local pharmacy to get vaccinated. It is best to get the shot as soon as the vaccine becomes available, which is typically late summer. It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies that protect against the influenza virus to develop in the body. Getting vaccinated early builds protection against the flu before the virus begins spreading. Flu outbreaks can happen as early as October, but most occur in January or later.
Learn key facts about the flu by visiting the Centers for Disease and Prevention Control website.