Do you get the flu vaccine every year? We do! Three out of four people in our household suffer from asthma and our youngest one gets severe croup attacks multiple times a year, severe enough to end up at the ER. You bet prevention is important to us.

There are many old-wives-tales that people believe when it comes to talking about the cold/flu and flu vaccines. Below is a list of some of the most common misconceptions associated with the flu vaccine according to the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention.

The flu vaccine gives you the flu.

FALSE. Flu vaccinations delivered via a needle are either made with an ‘inactivated’ flu virus that’s not infectious, or with no flu virus at all.

You don’t need to get the flu vaccine every year.

FALSE. The 2015 Shoppers Drug Mart Flu Poll revealed that 53% of Canadians do not believe they need to get the flu shot each year. But pharmacists warn Canadian’s – “Don’t Miss Out!”. In order to best protect yourself from the flu you need to be vaccinated annually and Canadians can drop in to their local Shoppers Drug Mart any time of day no appointment necessary to get vaccinated this season.

You should wait until the height of flu season to get vaccinated so you’re protected for longer.

FALSE. While it’s never too late to get vaccinated, it’s best to receive your flu shot soon after it’s available, likely October. The antibodies delivered via the flu vaccine that protect you against infection take up to two weeks to take effect, and since the flu peaks between December – February it’s important to get vaccinated weeks before the holiday party season starts.

Pregnant women need to get consent from their doctor prior to receiving the flu vaccine.

FALSE. There is no recommendation for pregnant women to seek consent from their doctor prior to vaccination. However, there are some people who should seek their doctors’ advice prior to being vaccinated, including those who have a moderate – to – severe illness and patients with a history of Guillain-Barre Syndrome.

We got our vaccines at our local Shoppers Drug Mart for free this year and it took us only 10-15 minutes, with no appointment required!

Disclosure: I was compensated for this post, however all views and opinions expressed are my own.