Should you get a flu shot? Here’s why you should

Door to the office of Student Health Services.

While we sadly still find ourselves in the midst of a global pandemic, it’s more important than ever for every one of us to be taking care of ourselves physically, mentally and emotionally. Our health is a top priority for not only you, but also for your community. One way you can ensure your own safety and the safety of others is by getting your yearly flu shot.

Currently, the office of Student Health Services is offering flu shots for $20, made out in cash or check, to WLU students by walk-in or appointment. To make an appointment, students can call the office at (304) 336-8049, or email nurse Christy Bennington. The office is located in the lower level of Shaw Hall and is open Monday – Friday from 7 a.m. – 2 p.m. If necessitated by appointment, the office hours can be extended.

Personally, I know that my immune system definitely isn’t the strongest, and I know that if I was unlucky enough to get the flu, I’d probably go on to get COVID-19 and one of its variants. I admit, that might be me being pessimistic, but with all my past experiences with health, sickness, vaccinations, and the hospital, I can never be too careful!

This same point was echoed by Bennington when I went in for my flu shot just the other day; “With everything going on, you have to take as many precautions as possible to make sure you’re not only taking care of yourself, but your friends and family as well. Getting your yearly flu shot gives you a reassurance that you’re at a lower level to contract influenza, but it also makes you less likely to be contagious if you do catch anything through the season.”

Of course, everyone has their own personal opinions and feelings towards the COVID-19 vaccine and vaccines in general, and to a point, it’s understandable given how new COVID-19 is to all of us. However, we all know the flu too well, and in the midst of the pandemic, I think we can all agree that our health is the most important thing right now.

Freshman Leah Reuschel, a dental hygiene major, echoed these same sentiments when asked if she was going to get her flu shot to prepare for the upcoming cold season; “I think so, in one respect I know it’s the best thing to do, especially with COVID-19 and the Delta variant still raging throughout the world, right now more than ever it’s so important for people to take care of themselves and make sure their body is ready for any kind of illness the world might throw at them and just hope it’s not COVID-19 or any of its variants. On the other hand, I’ve gotten flu shots before that have left me feeling pretty sick, so I’m a little apprehensive. In the end, though, I probably will get it just so I don’t take anything home to my mom or my friends. It’s the best thing to do for the greater community, right now.”

If you’re feeling a little nervous to get your flu shot, take comfort in knowing that you’re not alone; in a world ravaged by a global pandemic, every kind of illness has become exponentially scarier to all of us. If you have the resources, however, to prepare for the sickness the world might throw at you, I cannot encourage you to take advantage of them enough; and remember, if you don’t get a flu shot for yourself, just think of it as getting it for your loved ones.