Protecting yourself from illness is important, especially when you live with multiple sclerosis.
Being ill when you have MS can mess with your body. When you have an infection, fever, or become overheated, it can cause a temporary pseudo-exacerbation. Until your body temperature returns to normal or the infection is resolved, MS symptoms can wreak havoc with your ability to function, much in the same way a relapse would.
One way to protect yourself from getting sick this winter is to get the annual flu vaccine. It contains inactivated (killed) influenza viruses that are specifically chosen each season to protect against three or four of the most highly anticipated flu viruses. Once you get a flu shot, it takes about two weeks for the body to develop antibodies to be able to fight the viruses.
The flu vaccine can also come in a nasal spray form, the flu mist, which contains live attenuated viruses. People with MS, people who are immunosuppressed, children with asthma, and pregnant women are some of those who should NOT receive the nasal vaccine. Further, for the 2016-2017 season, the Center for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC) recommends that no one use the flu mist due to concerns with its effectiveness.
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Annual Flu Vaccine, MS, and MS Medications