As all pediatricians in Wake Forest, NC and beyond know, flu season is just around the corner. That means it is absolutely necessary to get your kids vaccinated. It may feel like you just got them done, but the way that the flu virus evolves, you need new ones. Still not convinced? Here are 3 reasons to get flu shots as soon as possible.
1. The Flu Poses Serious Health Risks
The flu virus is incredibly common but it is also unpredictable. It can cause serious complications and even death for the healthiest of children. Still not worried?
On average, 5% to 20% of the U.S. population gets the flu and more than 200,000 people are hospitalized from complications. At least 77 children died from the flu in the 2015-2016 season. That’s just based on reported numbers. The death toll is probably much higher because many flu deaths aren’t reported or are caused by complications from the flu.
Although the flu is treatable with antiviral medications, these drugs aren’t as effective if they aren’t started early, not to mention the expense and side effects. According to The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) all people ages 6 months and older, including children and adolescents, should get a flu vaccination. In addition, household contacts and out-of-home caregivers of children with high risk conditions and all children under the age of 5 especially should be vaccinated.
2. Now is the Time to Get Vaccinated
Shipments for Influenza vaccine have already started and will continue through fall and winter. Flu Vaccine is available currently at Rainbow Kids Pediatrics.
You need your kids to get vaccinated before the flu starts going around. Infants and children up to 8 years of age receiving the flu shot for the first time may need two doses of the vaccine, administered four weeks apart. It is important that these children get their first dose as soon as possible to be sure they can complete both doses before the flu season begins.
This year, the inactivated influenza vaccine (IIV) is given by intramuscular injection and is approved for children 6 months of age and older. During the last three flu seasons, the nasal spray vaccine did not offer the best protection against the influenza virus. The CDC does not recommend the flu mist. That being said, do not wait for a different method of vaccine. Influenza virus is unpredictable. What’s most important is that people receive the vaccine as soon as possible.
3. Even if They Get the Flu, It Will Be Milder
According to a recent study, vaccinated people who get the flu usually get a mild form of the disease, often just the sniffles. People who are not will be the ones worser off.
It should be noted also, that you can’t get the flu from the vaccine. Flu vaccines are made from killed viruses. However, mild symptoms, such as headache, muscle aches, and chills, can occur. If this happens, luckily these symptoms resolve on their own in a couple of days.
Want to Learn More?
Have more questions about the flu vaccine or want to schedule an appointment with Rainbow Kids Pediatrics? Contact us to set up an appointment. Of course, as pediatricians we strive to provide a warm and welcoming environment where Wake Forest, NC based families can receive quality healthcare services for their children. At Rainbow Kids Pediatrics we are understanding and honored to serve children from birth through adolescence.