Flu Shots Are Still Important - Here's Why
Last flu season was rough. Nationwide, there were more than 30,000 flu-related hospitalizations. Adults ages 65 and older were four times as likely as the general population to end up in the hospital due to complications of the flu.
Even some people who had their flu shots got sick last year. Yet getting the flu vaccine is still crucial. Although it can’t prevent every case of the flu, it’s your best protection. And if you do get sick, your symptoms may be milder.
How the Flu Vaccine Works
Flu viruses occur in many varieties. Every year, scientists predict which flu viruses will be most common in the coming months. Then they make a vaccine targeting three or four of those viruses.
Why You Need the Vaccine
It’s especially important to protect yourself from the flu as you age. Older adults are at a higher risk for hospitalizations from the flu and flu-related deaths.
Why is your risk higher when you’re older? Aging weakens your immune system. This makes it harder for your body to fend off the flu. Other health conditions—such as heart disease, lung disease, and diabetes—add to the risk for flu-related problems.
Be sure to get your flu shot—ideally, in the fall before flu season starts. Often, the vaccine will keep the flu away. But if you do get sick, it could make the difference between a minor issue and a life-threatening illness.
For Better Health, Give This a Shot
A primary care provider (PCP) can help you maintain your good health and address any medical concerns that may arise. Make your first appointment today!