Winter isn't the only season heading for Alberta. Flu season will soon be upon us, bringing with it sore throats, red noses and a general sense of malaise. This year, the flu season is expected to be one of the worst seen in years.

Luckily, flu shots exist to help people avoid the worst of the disease. The flu vaccine varies from year to year, depending on which viruses are expected to be common. Despite not being 100 per cent effective, Riverside Value Drug Mart pharmacist and owner Ray Ainscough said it's definitely worth getting.

"They always do their best [when formulating the shot]. They always try to see what the most common flu is at that particular moment," explained Ainscough. "It's a well-educated guess. Most of the time, they're right though."

Although the flu shot isn't a guarantee against getting sick this winter, Ainscough said that there are other benefits to getting jabbed.

"I think it helps. I think it helps with your immunity. I've been getting the flu shot [and] I've never had the flu since I had the flu shot. I had the flu before I had the flu shot and I'll always get the flu shot because of that."

Riverside Value Drug Mart is offering a flu clinic starting the week of Oct. 23. The clinic runs all week from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. and walk-ins are accepted.

Ainscough had a final word for people on the fence about getting a flu shot this year.

"Bottom line: it either prevents it or helps prevent severity [and] helps with the immune system. It's worth it. Period."

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