How Does the Flu Shot Prevent Me From Getting the Flu?

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One of the great fallacies about the flu shot, or vaccine is I got it then it gave me the flu. And it can't. We actually have vaccines that can make you sick that way like the Measles Vaccine. The Measles Vaccine is what's called an attenuated virus meaning the Measles virus is alive.

We just beat up on it so it's less likely to make you sick, and then you expose your immune system to a live virus, you react to that live virus, and then what we call the wild type the measles virus that you don't want to get, you're defended against it. Flu doesn't work that way.

The flu vaccine is just antigens. It's just proteins from the flu virus. It is not a living virus, it's not and even a whole virus, and there is no way it can't give you the flu. What it can do of cause is produce a low cold inflammatory reaction and it's really supposed to but it sometimes that hurts.

Sometimes you shoulder get red and sore. Mine often does. And the other thing of course that happens is, you tend to get your flu shot November, maybe into early December. Well, it's cold season. So you may very well get sick around the time that you get the flu shot and then you'll think that the flu shot made you sick, but that's not true.

In terms of how it defends you, essentially, you're putting into your body, proteins that ride the surface of the influencive virus and so, you produce antibodies to those proteins. Your immune system remembers what those proteins look like and those antibodies basically going to a storage depo.

And then, if you are several weeks later exposed to the actual flu the flu virus ideally is wearing those same proteins on it's surface, your immune system immediately recognizes. It's like putting them in a database enemies like scan you at the airport to see are you on that list of bad guys and if you are, you can't get through.

Immune system does the same thing. It basically has a list of bad actors. These proteins are now on that list, takes a look at that list, no you're not getting through the gate. So you immediately amount of risk, white blood cells and antibody response, engulf all the viral particles and they can't get into your airway and make you sick.

That's pretty much how vaccination works.