How do you prevent getting the flu in the first place?
Clinical immunologist and holistic doctor in NYC, Dr. Dean Mitchell discusses the importance of the flu shot and why you should get it. Your best chance at reducing your risk for getting the flu is by getting the flu vaccine.
I know what a lot of you are saying – you’ve heard that it doesn’t work. But let’s look at some facts about the flu shot. This year the flu virus is more intense than it was in 2009 when the swine flu virus was going around. This year’s virus the H3N2 is the same as the Hong Kong virus that was circulating in 1968.
Here are a few statistics you can’t ignore about the flu virus.
- 50,000 Americans are predicted to die this year from the flu.
- Only 40% of people get a flu shot.
It’s true that this year’s flu shot is only 25% effective but this is because the main flu strain is very virulent which makes it hard to contain.
Overall, when looking at all the flu strains such as the other Type A flu strains and Type B flu strain, the flu shot has a 39% effectiveness. In fact, the Type B flu strain increases in late winter and early spring which makes it even more critical to get a flu shot.
The NYC Health Department reports show that the H3N2 Type A flu strain caused 3,187 cases of the flu and the Type B flu strain caused 2,048 cases of the flu so the Type B strain is definitely on the rise. Getting a vaccination for the flu will have a huge impact.
Key points to remember about the flu and the flu shot.
Thelu vaccine is actually 51% effective in children. Getting children vaccination is extremely important since they are often in high-risk places like their school where the flu can spread like wildfire. Getting your child vaccinated not only helps your kid but also helps protect other children. The Journal of Pediatrics conducted a study that looked at children flu cases from 2010-2016 and found that 675 children died from the flu and 2/3 of those children did not receive the flu shot.
Young children and adults over 65 are at the most risk of getting the flu. The flu shot helps protect your immune system as it stimulates the antibodies in your system which will at least partially fight the flu virus.
Keep yourself immune strong by getting the flu shot.
– Dr. Dean Mitchell M.D.
Mitchell Medical Group in NYC & Long Island
Dr. Dean Mitchell is a Board Certified Allergist and Immunologist based out of NYC. He graduated from the Sackler School of Medicine and completed training at the Robert Cooke Allergy Institute in New York City. He is also a Professor of Clinical Immunology at Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine, a fellow of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, and the author of Allergy and Asthma Solution: The Ultimate Program for Reversing Your Symptoms One Drop at a Time. Dr. Dean Mitchell, M.D. has also been featured in The New York Times, The Huffington Post, Fitness Magazine, Dr. Oz and News NY 1. Dr. Mitchell also hosts the podcast The Smartest Doctor in the Room – a combination of a lively, personal and in-depth interview with top healthcare specialists.
Vaccine Effectiveness – How Well Does the Flu Vaccine Work. CDC. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/qa/vaccineeffect.htm
Brendan Flannery, PhD, Sue B. Reynolds, PhD, Lenee Blanton, MPH, Tammy A. Santibanez, PhD, Alissa O’Halloran, MSPH, Peng-Jun Lu, MD, PhD, Jufu Chen, PhDa, Ivo M. Foppa, MD, PhD, Paul Gargiullo, PhD, Joseph Bresee, MD, James A. Singleton, PhD, and Alicia M. Fry, MD. “Influenza Vaccine Effectiveness Against Pediatric Deaths: 2010–2014.” Published online May 01, 2017 PEDIATRICS Vol. 139 No. 5 May 01, 2017 e20164244