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Flu Shots

Has your child had a flu shot? Most kids have and there's good reason. Like all vaccines, this one can protect your child from a pretty awful illness – the flu.

No one loves shots. The good news is that the flu vaccine can also be given in a nasal mist (a nose spray). If you prefer it, you can ask your doctor if the nasal spray is right for your child. This type of vaccine contains live flu virus, though, and shouldn't be given to kids who have certain health problems – or even kids who live with people who could get very sick from the flu.

In a healthy person, the flu causes a fever, body aches, and other cold-like symptoms. A person who has the flu will sleep a lot and feel sick, but will get better in a week.

The problem with the flu, also called influenza, is that it makes some people really sick. They are less able to get well on their own so they may need to go to the hospital. That's why a flu shot or nasal mist vaccine is recommended for just about everyone.