ADHD: A Parenting Guide

Flu Shots: Protection For You And For Others

The best way to avoid coming down with the flu is to get a flu vaccine, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The flu is contagious, and you can be infected by someone who doesn't even appear sick. While there is no such thing as being protected 100%, getting the flu vaccine each year significantly cuts the chance that you'll suffer a bout of the flu. This protection goes beyond yourself, however, and when you take the time to get vaccinated, you're helping protect others as well. Most insurance companies pick up the tab for a flu shot, which leaves you with little excuse for not getting one.

Protection For You

Getting the flu can make you miserable for up to two weeks. The most common symptoms of the flu include fever, chills, headache, body aches, sore throat, fatigue, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Most healthy people fully recover from the flu, but in serious cases, the flu can lead to pneumonia, bronchitis, ear infection or sinus infections. Getting your annual flu shot is a simple way to prevent two weeks of misery.

Protection For Newborns and Infants

Babies under the age of 6 months can't get the flu vaccine. That leaves this population highly susceptible to coming down with the illness, and flu can be particularly dangerous for children this young. If you don't get your flu shot and happen to come down with the infection, and then come into contact with a tiny baby, you might spread it to an unprotected child. Small children are also more likely to get the flu because their immune systems are still developing. Children are at a higher risk for complications associated with the flu, too.

Protection for People With Compromised Immune Systems

People with health problems that impair their immune systems, such as those getting cancer treatment, can't get the flu vaccine. When you don't get vaccinated, this population can be at an even higher risk. If you have the flu virus and spread it to someone with a weak immune system, not only can that person get very sick, but he is also more likely to experience the potentially life-threatening complications of the flu.

Protection for Those Allergic to the Vaccine

Individuals with an egg allergy can't get the flu vaccine because it can cause a serious allergic reaction. Like other populations, skipping the flu shot means that if you do get sick, you're more likely to spread it to people in this population.

For more information on why you should get flu shots, ask clinics such as Jeff's Prescription Shop