Common flu myths debunked

December 15, 2011 8:18:36 PM PST
This is the season to be jolly, but it's also flu season.

The experts say you'd better watch out for some popular myths that can fool you about the flu.

Doctors say they're flu fictions.

- Flu shots cause the flu?

False - flu vaccines are not made from the whole virus and so they can't make you sick. If you catch the flu despite getting vaccinated, it's because the vaccine is not 100% effective.

- Younger, healthier people don't need flu shots?

False - the flu can put healthy people in intensive care, and, of course, make them contagious.

- Antibiotics fight flu?

Wrong - the flu is a virus, and antibiotics don't work against viruses.

- If you got your flu shot last year, you don't need one this year?

That's false usually. The flu virus changes year to year, so the vaccine has to change, too.

This year is the exception, so the flu shot hasn't changed from last year's.

Still, experts say to get one anyway for a protective boost.

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