Insightsthe blog of Porter Hills
National Immunization Month
Baby Shots Again?
When we think of immunizations we often think of babies getting their shots but it’s important that adults of all ages stay current on their immunizations. Did you know that the CDC has a chart with the recommended vaccinations for people over 55 years of age?
It was once thought childhood vaccines gave lifetime immunity but now we know immunity can begin to fade later in life. If you meet the age requirement for any vaccination but lack the documentation that you have received it and no evidence of previous infection, it is important that you get those vaccinations to stop the risk of spreading disease to younger family members such as grandkids.
Adults need to have a tetanus booster (Td) every 10 years but with the return of whooping cough, you should receive a tetanus booster with pertussis (Tdap). That is the immunization for whooping cough, for one of those doses.
As of 2014, the CDC recommends 2 pneumococcal vaccines for those 65 and older to prevent pneumonia. You should receive a dose of the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV13) followed by a dose of the pneumococcal polysaccharide (PPSV23) vaccine 6-12 months later. Your doctor can ensure you receive the correct vaccine.
Getting an annual flu shot is the best way of lowering the incidence of influenza and spreading it to others. Doctors recommend an annual flu shot for almost everyone over the age of 6 months. It is especially important for older adults and caregivers to get a flu shot. During a regular flu season 90% of deaths occur in adults over the age of 65. For those that continue to refuse to get a regular flu shot because they think they got the flu from the shot before, you can’t get the flu from a flu shot. The flu shot uses an inactivated virus. If a person gets ill after receiving the flu shot they were probably infected with a virus before getting the shot and it was a coincidence they became ill. Some side effects associated with the flu shot are redness or swelling at the injection site, low grade fever and body aches.
The flu shot is a combination of 3 different flu viruses. Each year the combination may change according to what research indicates will be the most common during the upcoming flu season. There are several different forms of the flu vaccination available. Your doctor can determine which form is the best for you. Flu shots are available from your doctor, pharmacy and many other locations. Typical flu season in the United States runs from as early as October to as late as May. It takes about 2 weeks for your body to build up immunity to the flu after receiving the flu shot so now is the time to think about getting yours.
Be well and stay healthy by keeping your immunizations up to date and enjoy every season of life.