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Health Tip: Flu Shot 101

Who should get it, when, and why?

Please note: This article was published more than one year ago. The facts and conclusions presented may have since changed and may no longer be accurate. And "More information" links may no longer work. Questions about personal health should always be referred to a physician or other health care professional.

(HealthDay News) -- Every winter, many Americans become sick with the flu. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that everyone over the age of 6 months get the flu shot each year, particularly people with weakened immune systems and those at increased risk for flu's complications.

The flu vaccine may reduce your likelihood of getting the flu, and reduce trips to the doctor's office and missed school or work.

It takes up to two weeks for the flu shot to become effective, so you should get the shot before flu season is in full swing.

The flu shot is suggested for pregnant women and people with chronic health conditions. But it isn't recommended for babies younger than 6 months, or for people who are allergic to any of the shot's components.

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