It had been about eight years since I got a flu shot. I never felt good after them and no matter what the doctor said to the contrary, I always felt flu-ish afterward.
My children, certainly, have gotten the flu after the flu shot. It happens every single year.
For the last eight years, I have gotten the flu. Not just a cold, but influenza, the kind that has me bed-bound for days, and weak and lethargic for another couple of weeks. When I get the flu, it knocks me down hard.
So this year I decided that five weeks of sickness last winter wasn't going to happen again. But I didn't want the shot.
At EmpowHER, we have received hundreds of questions and complaints about pain in the upper arm after getting flu shots, so many that I won't get one after reading some of their stories.
Many have been in pain for several years now and others have gone through months of physical therapy as a result of wrongly-placed shots.
For more information on this, visit our very active Flu Shot threads here: http://www.empowher.com/community/ask/it-normal-my-arm-muscle-my-shoulde...
Many of our members have complained to the CDC about this issue.
Due to this hot topic on EmpowHER, I elected to have the newer option known as the flu mist vaccine or as most people call it, the sniffer shot.
I sniffed from a thin nasal tube one nostril at a time. A few big sniffs to get the vaccination up through my nose and about three seconds later, that was it. No needles, pain-free and no potential pain in the upper arm down the line.
So is there a difference between the shot? Are both equally effective?
Pretty much, although there is some evidence that the sniffer shot may be more effective for children. There are more restrictions, however, on who can elect to use the spray mist instead of the shot.
For the mist, my nurse told me, you have to be aged between 2 and 49 and be in good health with no chance of pregnancy. Those with weakened immune systems, who've had heart or kidney disease or upper respiratory conditions aren't good candidates.