No, You Didn’t Get a Cold From Your Flu Shot

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My apologies in advance. Evidently, it’s impossible to get people to stop spreading incorrect information.

Reactions to flu shots are not contagious.

You do not get a communicable cold from the flu shot.

I can’t believe I still need to preach at people about this.

It’s an old and inaccurate wive’s tale that you have a cold because you got a flu shot. You have a cold because you were already exposed to another virus.

If you get a flu shot and exhibit fever, cough, runny nose, or body aches for any length of time, you need to treat the episode as if you have been contaminated with another virus. It didn’t come from the flu shot, and you certainly didn’t get a cold of any magnitude from getting the flu shot*.

It is possible to get a flu shot after being exposed to another virus, one which could be the common cold or any number of a variety of other viruses. You don’t “get” a cold from the flu shot. If you develop a fever, cough, and other more pronounced symptoms that persist, especially with intense symptoms and duration, it’s because you were already exposed to another virus – not because you got the flu shot. Flu vaccines do not contain live viruses. Rather, they contain dead viruses or gene pieces that trigger an immune response.

You don’t get a persistent fever, cough, runny nose, and watery eyes from the flu shot. Some people have mild reactions such as soreness and low-grade fever that dissipates quickly. You do not get a cold from getting a flu shot, just as you can’t get the flu from a flu shot. In blind studies, people who got either salt-water injections or the flu shot, the only differences in symptoms was increased soreness in the arm among people who got the flu shot. There were no differences in terms of other symptoms.

There are many myths about the flu shot.

I would apologize for being so preachy but it’s agonizing to see people fail to take basic precautions when they are infected with viruses unrelated to their flu shot.

It’s exactly how other people get your viruses.

You can ask your doctor, of course. That’s how science works. Knowledge defeats old wive’s tales, no matter whom you hear them from or how long they’ve been passed around.

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