Preparing for Flu Season 2013
People often wonder who should get the flu vaccine. It is recommended that anyone who is 6 months of age and older. It may be more crucial for some due to other health issue. Those who have the following conditions should not wait but instead be vaccinated as soon as possible:
- Anyone who is considered a high risk of developing serious complications like pneumonia if they get sick with the flu like:
- Those that have medical conditions including asthma, diabetes, fibromyalgia and chronic lung disease.
- Woman that are pregnant
- The elder population (65 years and older).
- Everyone who care for others who are high risk of developing serious complications (This includes people who live in the same household, caregivers of those that have medical conditions such as asthma, chronic lung disease, and diabetes).
When should I get vaccinated?
- CDC recommends that people receive their vaccination as soon as it is available in their community. Flu seasons vary from year to year but can start as early as October.
- It takes approximately two weeks after you receive the vaccination for antibodies to develop in the body and provide protection against the flu.
- Doctors and nurses are encouraged to begin vaccinating their patients as soon as flu vaccine is available to them.
Do I need a flu vaccine every year?
- Yes, a Flu vaccine is needed every year due to the fact that the flu viruses are constantly changing. It’s not uncommon for new flu viruses to appear each year. The influenza vaccine is prepared each year to sustain the changing flu viruses.
- Getting vaccinated each year provides the best protection against influenza throughout flu season.
Where can I get a flu vaccine?
- Influenza vaccines are offered by various locations which include doctor’s offices, public health departments, and pharmacies. Some college health centers, employers, and schools may also offer the vaccine.
- People who do not have a regular doctor can receive the vaccine by going to places such as the local public health clinic, a pharmacy, an urgent care clinic, and your college health center, or work.
The good news is that are medications that can be given to treat the flu. They are called antiviral drugs. These medications can shorten the length of the illness and reduce your symptoms. The medications can also prevent serious flu-related illnesses such as pneumonia