Better protection from the flu!
Flu shot season is here….and there is even more protection this year!
It is hard to believe….but it is that time of year again, flu shot season. The Katydids have been chirping in the evening (6 weeks till that first frost??), and before we know it flu season will be here. So, even though we have had some beautiful summer weather over the last few days, it is time to start thinking about everyone in your home receiving the flu shot. (yes, everyone!) The recommendations remain the same, everyone 6 months of age and older should receive a flu shot. Those of you who have babies younger than 6 months need to make sure that your baby is cocooned in protection…everyone who has frequent contact with your baby should be vaccinated against the flu!
This year you may be hearing about the newer quadrivalent vaccines. These flu vaccines contain protection against 4 strains of influenza. Usually the flu shot covers 2 type A strains and 1 type B strain. Flu strains change and evolve so the flu shot “recipe” changes as experts try to predict what flu strains will be most likely to hit during flu season. Type A strains usually make people sicker so both H1N1 and H3N2 type strains are included. There is also usually 2 strains of type B flu around and experts try to guess which one to include in the vaccine. Now, both strains have been added for better coverage. The supply of quadrivalent flu vaccine may be more limited…but there will be plenty of the traditional trivalent (3 strain) vaccine, the important point is…get a flu shot! If you have a choice…get the quadrivalent vaccine to protect yourself and your child more completely. Every year approximately 24,000 Americans die from the flu…and many become ill. Don’t wait, vaccinate and protect yourself and your child. Call today and find out when your doctor will offer the vaccine…adults now can also receive the vaccine from their local pharmacist without seeing a doctor. Ask these questions to help determine if your child needs 1 or 2 doses of the flu vaccine.
- Is your child 6 months old or older?
- Has your child ever received the flu vaccine?
- If yes, did your child receive two or more total doses of the flu vaccine since July of 2015?
- If yes, your child needs one dose of the flu vaccine. If your child has not received two or more vaccines since July of 2015, and is between 6 months of age and age 8, then he or she will need two doses of flu vaccine separated by at least 30 days.
- If your child has never gotten a flu vaccine or you are not sure about the number of doses, is between the ages of 6 months and age 8, he or she should receive two doses to be safe.
- If your child is 9 or older, then one dose of flu vaccine is all that is necessary.
Children between 6 months and 9 years need two doses of the flu vaccine initially to establish first time immunity. This is my first reminder of several to come, the flu vaccine is a must for all parents and children over 6 months of age!! Keep yourself and your child healthy! Look ahead, plan to make that appointment for your child’s flu vaccines, and remember that your child may need 2 vaccines! Flu season will hit this winter, that is a promise, so be prepared. Now, let’s get back to enjoying this great end of summer weather!
Take a breath, enjoy the joyful moments of each day, and remember you don’t have to be perfect to be the perfect parent.