Who Should Not Get The Senior Flu Shot

Related Articles

Who Should You Get A Flu Vaccine And Which One Should You Choose

Myth: You dont need the flu shot every year. FALSE! | Walgreens

You can get the flu at any time of year, but it’s most common in the fall and winter. It usually starts to spread in October and peaks between December and February. That’s why this time is called the flu season

It takes at least two weeks for your flu vaccine to start working, so try to get vaccinated by the end of October. However, getting vaccinated after October can still help protect you from the flu. Because older adults may lose protection from a flu vaccine more quickly, try to avoid getting vaccinated too early .

There are flu vaccines designed specifically for older adults. The CDC recommends that people age 65 and older receive a higher-dose flu vaccine or an adjuvanted flu vaccine . These vaccines are potentially more effective than the standard flu vaccine for people in this age group. Talk with a health care provider or pharmacist about which vaccine is best for you.

Treatment For The Flu

When considering treatment for the flu, itâs helpful to keep these considerations in mind:

  • Treating the flu should begin as soon as possible because antiviral drugs work best when started early or within 48 hours after symptoms start.
  • For you to get an antiviral drug, a health care provider needs to write a prescription. These medicines fight against flu by keeping flu viruses from creating more viruses in your body.
  • Antiviral drugs can make your flu milder and help make you feel better faster. They may also prevent severe health problems that can result from having the flu.

Is The Vaccine Guaranteed To Prevent The Flu

As with other immunizations, the flu vaccine is not 100% effective in preventing illness.

However, if you do get the vaccine and then get the flu, Goebel said, we do have some evidence youre likely a less severe infection.

For many seniors especially those with diabetes, asthma and other chronic conditions getting the flu vaccine can reduce the risk of the onset of acute episodes, hospitalization and death.

Recently, some studies have suggested the flu vaccine may even reduce the risk of getting Alzheimers disease. However, Goebel said theres not enough evidence to support a direct correlation and that more research is needed.

Read Also: Walk-in Tubs For Seniors

Who Should Not Get The Influenza Vaccine

Speak with a health care provider if you:

  • Have had a life-threatening reaction to a previous dose of influenza vaccine, or any part of the vaccine. People with egg allergies can be safely immunized with the influenza vaccine
  • Have had severe oculo-respiratory syndrome after getting an influenza vaccine
  • Are receiving a checkpoint inhibitor to treat cancer. This may affect when you should get the vaccine
  • Developed Guillain-Barré Syndrome within 8 weeks of getting an influenza vaccine without another cause being identified

GBS is a rare condition that can result in weakness and paralysis of the body’s muscles. It most commonly occurs after infections. In rare cases, GBS can also occur after some vaccines. GBS may be associated with influenza vaccine in about 1 per million recipients.

Best Time To Get Your Flu Shot

Should seniors get high dose flu shot?

The best time to get your flu shot is by the end of October. Once you get your shot, your body needs about 2 weeks to get ready to fight the flu.

Flu season usually runs from November through the end of April. If itâs past October and you didnât get your flu shot yet, get it. Itâll help keep you safe for the rest of the flu season.

Also Check: T Mobile Senior Plan $15

What To Do If Your Older Parent Or Relative Is Unwilling Or Unable To Get Vaccinated

Now, what if your older parent wont, or cant, get a flu shot?

Some older adults just dont want to get it. Here are some things you can try:

  • Ask them to clarify what their concerns are. Its important to start by listening, in order to understand what an older person believes about the flu and the flu shot.
  • Provide information to dispel myths and misunderstandings. Sometimes all people need is a little of the right kind of information.
  • Point out that it can benefit an older persons family members and neighbors. Getting a flu shot can reduce the risk that we pass the flu on to another person. People are sometimes more willing to take action to protect others than to protect their own health.
  • Make sure they know they wont have to pay for the flu shot. If you get the shot from a provider who takes Medicare, it shouldnt cost anything.
  • Offer to go together to get your flu shots. Sometimes it helps to make it a family outing.

There are also some older adults for whom its hard to get a flu shot, such as people who are homebound or have very limited transportation options.

If this is your situation, the main thing to do is encourage flu shots for family and others coming to the house. For older adults who dont get out much, their main source of exposure to influenza and other dangerous viruses will be from those who come to them.

Above all, dont panic if your older loved one cant or wont get a flu shot.

This article was reviewed and updated in September 2022.

What Other Flu Vaccines Are Available For People 65 Years And Older

All flu vaccines available for the 2022-2023 season can be used for people aged 65 years and older. However, three specific vaccines are preferentially recommended for this age group. In addition to Fluzone High-Dose Quadrivalent, one other flu vaccine is licensed specifically for people 65 years and older. This is Fluad Quadrivalent, which contains an adjuvant, an ingredient intended to help improve immune response. Additionally, there is a recombinant influenza vaccine, Flublok Quadrivalent, which was first licensed by the FDA in the United States for use in adults 18 years and older. Fluzone High-Dose Quadrivalent, Fluad Quadrivalent, and Flublok Quadrivalent are all preferentially recommended for people aged 65 years and older.

You May Like: Bed Rails For Seniors To Prevent Falls

Let Our Care Assessment Guide You

Our free tool provides options, advice, and next steps based on your unique situation.

Older adults are at high risk for life-threatening complications from the flu, including hospitalizations and death. The CDC estimates the flu causes 140,000 to 810,000 hospitalizations and 12,000 to 61,000 deaths in the U.S. every year. The CDC also estimates up to 70% of flu-related hospitalizations and 85% of deaths associated with the flu occur in seniors age 65 and older.

Ensuring your senior loved one is protected against the flu can help prevent flu-related complications and hospitalizations. Learn about the different types of senior flu shots, their effectiveness, possible side effects, and how they can prevent flu-related complications.

You Had A Severe Reaction To The Shot Last Year

Why Do Some Health Care Workers Avoid Flu Shots? | A Kaiser Permanente Study

If you experienced a severe reaction to your flu shot last year, talk to your doctor first before heading in for this year’s vaccine. In most cases, the reaction you experienced wasn’t related to the flu shot at all. However, in some cases, it may be a sign that you’re allergic to a component used in the flu vaccine. According to the Mayo Clinic, “The flu vaccine isn’t recommended for anyone who had a severe reaction to a previous flu vaccine.”

According to Dr. May, you’ll know you’re having a severe allergic reaction if you experience “lip or tongue swelling, wheezing, hives, hoarseness, difficulty breathing, paleness or a fast heartbeat.”

Your doctor may still recommend that you get the flu vaccine since this illness can be dangerous and lead to serious complications. Your medical provider may want to monitor you or have another medical professional observe your reaction to the vaccine this year, just to be safe.

Recommended Reading: American House Senior Living Communities

Watch: Heres What To Know About Covid And The Flu This Season

In DuPage County, health leaders say theres been a dramatic increase in pediatric hospitalizations for respiratory illnesses.

The DuPage County Health System says at times, there are no hospital beds available anywhere in the county.

Advocate Aurora Health is also limiting hospital visitors because theres so much flu going around.

At Saint Anthony Hospital in Chicago, one of the only community hospitals in the area with its own pediatric unit, the beds are full. So is the emergency room. RSV, COVID and now a rising number of flu cases are pushing the small hospital back into disaster planning.

We went from one crisis to another, said Raquel Prendkowski, chief nursing officer at St. Anthony. Its hard to navigate that.

St. Anthony sits on the border of Little Village and North Lawndale. It serves a minority, Medicaid population, and like many hospitals, it is also struggling with staffing shortages.

You have the bigger hospitals that have the bells and whistles and they are unable to staff, Prendkowski said. What does that say for smaller hospitals?

To avoid becoming overwhelmed during the next few weeks, hospital officials are pushing to get more of its population vaccinated for the flu and COVID. Booster rates among Black and Latino residents remain low. As it did during various COVID surges, the hospital partners with community organizations like churches to convince people to get vaccinated.

Can The Flu Shot Make Me Sick

No, flu vaccines cannot cause flu illness. Some people report having mild side effects after flu vaccination, such as:

  • Low-grade fever
  • Arm pain at the injection site

To help ease the pain and avoid the symptoms, you can take a pain reliever like Tylenol or Ibuprofen for muscle aches, headaches and a low-grade fever.

For arm pain, apply a cool compress and keep your arm moving after the shot.

Get the facts about the flu

Don’t Miss: Ella Springs Senior Living Community

Is There Anyone Who Should Not Get A Flu Vaccine

Children less than 6 months of age are too young to receive flu vaccine, which is why it’s especially important everyone who comes into contact with young infants receives flu vaccine themselves. Also, if someone has had a serious allergic reaction to a previous dose of flu vaccine or to one of the vaccine components*, they should not receive flu vaccine. Ask your healthcare provider which flu vaccine is right for you and your child.

*Note: persons who are allergic to eggs are still recommended to receive flu vaccine.

How Does The Flu Shot Protect You

Has your young child received their free flu vaccination?

The flu shot prompts your immune system to produce antibodies against a specific strain of the flu. If youre exposed to this particular flu virus later, youll already have antibodies ready to fight off the virus.

It usually takes about 2 weeks to build up your immunity to a flu virus after youve been vaccinated against it.

Youll have the most antibodies 1 to 2 months later. After this time, your protection begins to decline. Thats why you need a flu shot every year.

Each years vaccine is based on which strains are most likely to spread during that flu season.

The vaccine wont protect you from every strain. But if you do get sick, itll likely be less severe due to the vaccine.

The 2020-21 flu season may be complicated by the COVID-19 pandemic. The overlap of these two viral illnesses threatens to overburden hospitals, which typically get an influx of patients who have complications from the seasonal flu.

Getting your flu shot can help lower your risk of flu complications that could put you in the hospital.

Most people have little to no reaction following the vaccine. Theres no live virus in the flu shot, so it cant give you the flu.

Some people have a temporary reaction at the injection site, such as:

Normally, you can get a flu vaccine at your doctors office, your local pharmacy, or even at a walk-in retail clinic.

Some employers even provide flu shots for their employees at their workplace.

Also Check: Help For Seniors Home Repairs

You Need A Flu Shot Every Year

A new flu vaccine is produced every year to protect you during the upcoming flu season. It’s important that you get a new flu shot every year because:

  • flu viruses can change over time
  • the annual shot includes the strains expected to circulate in the upcoming season
  • the effectiveness of the flu shot can decrease over time, so receiving a vaccine each year helps to keep you protected

Frequently Asked Questions About The Flu Shot

When should I get my flu shot?

It takes up to two weeks for your immunity to build up after getting a flu shot. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that individuals make plans to get vaccinated early in the fall, before flu season begins, and ideally by the end of October.

However, even if you are not able to get vaccinated until November or later, a vaccination is still recommended because flu most commonly peaks in February and significant activity can continue into May, per

Who should get a flu shot?

Everyone 6 months of age and older should get an influenza vaccine every season, with rare exceptions.

Different influenza vaccines are approved for different age groups. Some people should not get some types of influenza vaccines, and some people should not receive flu vaccines at all . Everyone who is vaccinated should receive a flu vaccine that is appropriate for their age and health status.

Our healthcare providers will address any concerns or questions you may have!

Is it safe for pregnant women to get a flu shot?

The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that women who are or will be pregnant during the flu season receive the flu shot as soon as it is available, typically in the fall before flu season begins, and ideally no later than the end of October.

Who should NOT get a flu shot or should wait?

Don’t Miss: Senior Apartments In Chesapeake Va

Do I Really Need A Flu Vaccine Every Year

Yes. Everyone aged 6 months and older, without contraindications, is recommended to receive a year flu vaccine. A persons immune protection from vaccination declines over time, so an annual vaccination is needed to get the best protection from flu.

Also, flu viruses are constantly changing, so the composition of the viruses in the vaccine are reviewed each year and updated based on which viruses are circulating and making people sick.

Can You Get A Flu Vaccine When Youre Sick

CDC Recommending Everyone 6 Months Or Older To Get Flu Vaccine

Getting your influenza vaccine is the best way to protect yourself against the flu. Its recommended you get your flu shot as soon as you can, so you have immunity built up before flu season peaks.

But, if youre sick when its time for your flu vaccine appointment, know whats best for your body and immune system and whether you need to postpone.

Also Check: Ca State Parks Pass For Seniors

Flu & People 65 Years And Older

People 65 years and older are at higher risk of developing serious flu complications compared with young, healthy adults. This increased risk is due in part to changes in immune defenses with increasing age. While flu seasons vary in severity, during most seasons, people 65 years and older bear the greatest burden of severe flu disease. In recent years, for example, its estimated that between 70 percent and 85 percent of seasonal flu-related deaths have occurred in people 65 years and older, and between 50 percent and 70 percent of seasonal flu-related hospitalizations have occurred among people in this age group.

You’re Allergic To Certain Antibiotics

If you or your child is allergic to antibiotics, talk to your doctor first before getting a flu shot. Some flu shots don’t contain any antibiotics. However, according to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, certain flu shots may contain one or more of the following types of antibiotics:

  • Quantity Neomycin : < 0.00002 mg 0.000062mg
  • Quantity Polymyxin B : < 0.011mg
  • Kanamycin : < 0.00003 mg
  • Gentamicin : < 0.00015 mg

These antibiotics are sometimes added to the flu vaccine to prevent bacteria from contaminating it during the manufacturing process. If you’re worried about an allergic reaction to the vaccine, keep in mind the antibiotics used are not usually the same ones you may be allergic to. The most common antibiotic allergies are to penicillin, cephalosporins, or sulfa drugs, which are not used in flu vaccine production. Although you shouldn’t have an allergic reaction to the shot, it’s always best to check with your doctor before you get the vaccine.

Read Also: Free Phones For Senior Citizens

How Does Flu Spread

Flu spreads mainly by droplets when people who have flu talk, cough, or sneeze, and these droplets land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or are inhaled. Less often, a person might get flu by touching a surface or object that has flu virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes.

People can spread flu to others from one day before they have symptoms to 5-7 days after they get sick. This can be longer in children and people who are very sick.

How Effective Is The Flu Shot For Seniors

Story Medical Receives Season

The flu vaccine is not 100% effective, but its still one of the best ways to prevent the flu, according to the CDC. The regular flu vaccine seems to be less effective in seniors than it is in younger adults. However, PubMed studies have found the high-dose senior flu shot better protects older adults against the flu when compared with the standard flu vaccine.

Getting vaccinated also seems to reduce the severity of illness for people who get sick with the flu, according to the CDC. In fact, researchers have found that flu vaccinations in recent years have reduced the need for flu-related hospitalizations among older adults by 40%.

Don’t Miss: Best Laptop For Senior Citizens

Popular Articles