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Is it necessary to give a flu shot every year? I have been told that once you give your child a flu vaccine you have to keep giving it every year? Is this true?

Flu is very common during the winter season as the temperature starts to dip. Symptoms of flu in children may include high fever with chills or shivering, colds, coughs, sneezing, headache and body ache, tiredness and, sometimes, vomiting.

Influenza A and B are the most common types of flu viruses.

These viruses are highly contagious and are spread by droplets when a child coughs or sneezes. Since children tend to play and study in very close proximity to each other they tend to catch these infections very quickly.

Sometimes flu can become a bit serious especially in young children, elderly people and those with chronic illnesses.

It is always better to protect your child from flu by giving them the vaccine and the best time to give the vaccine would be at the onset of the winter season.

These virus strains tend to change quickly. For this reason, a vaccine that protected last year may not help this year. So, every year, new flu vaccines are manufactured to keep up with the new strains of the virus. Therefore, every year, the latest vaccine needs to be given to fight the flu.

Treatment includes rest, plenty of fluids and paracetamol to reduce fever.

Seek medical help if your child has difficulty in breathing, chest pain, severe muscle pain or if his/her fever is not coming under control.