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Friday, August 31, 2012

Flu shot vs flu mist when you have asthma

(Shutterstock image)

I am a big believer in Flu Shots. I know that some people try to avoid shots (who really likes needles anyway?!) If you don't have asthma, you can have the flu mist. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) the flu mist is for "healthy people."

 "Healthy" indicates persons who do not have an underlying medical condition that predisposes them to influenza complications.
Asthma is one of those conditions that "predisposes people to influenza complications." The flu mist is made with a live, weakened virus. That's not good for people with asthma, especially if you use corticosteroids. One of the side effects of steroids is that it impairs your immune system. The Free Dictionary by Farlex says that:

"...patients being treated with corticosteroids should avoid receiving live virus vaccines."

So check with your doctor, but we have always been told that if you have asthma, you can't have the flu mist. My kids are used to shots anyway, they get weekly allergy shots, so it's not a big deal. Check with your doctor to see if other family members who don't have asthma can get the mist. They may want the whole family to have the flu shot instead.

I have asthma, as well as all 3 of my kids. So we all just get the flu shot every year. We have the worst luck in the world, I know that if we didn't get the flu shot, one of us would get the flu and end up in the hospital. Son #2 and daughter Kitty have been hospitalized 12 times for asthma. And that's more than enough times for me. I feel like we payed for our own corner suite in the pediatrics ward at the hospital......

So, plan a day with the kids, roll up your sleeve and get your flu shot. Then take yourself out for a treat as a reward (bakery, ice cream, whatever.) Why should the kids have all the fun? We should get a treat for getting our shots too!


  1. That is actually a good idea. Tying up getting a flu shot with a reward will certainly make them more amiable to having them take other shots in the future. And you can turn it into a family quality time, so you get to spend more time with them in the movies or eating out. Win-win! It’s too bad about the flu mist and the asthma, though. But I think I’d rather have the shot than the mist myself, asthma or no asthma.


    1. Hi Lonnie,

      My kids are so used to having allergy shots, that it doesn't bother them to have another shot.

      They don't LIKE getting shots, but they just deal with it.

      I still think they deserve a little treat though!!