Lifestyle Magazine

Shots To Consider Getting…

October 5, 2017

Vaccines aren’t just for kids; age, lifestyle habits and travel can make adults vulnerable to vaccine-preventable diseases. Protection from childhood vaccines also wears out with time, leaving you vulnerable to serious diseases.

The Flu shot

When was the last time you thoroughly enjoyed having the flu? The aches, fever, nausea…having the flu isn’t fun. It makes you feel horrible and leads to missing school/ work and expensive medical bills. This is especially true for people with asthma, heart disease or diabetes, pregnant women, very young kids and the elderly, because they are at a higher risk of developing flu-related complications.

One of the best ways to avoid this is to get the flu shot every year like the CDC recommends. This applies to everyone above 6 months of age.

Whooping Cough Vaccine

Whooping cough is a highly contagious respiratory disease which causes cough and cold-like symptoms. It mainly affects infants who haven’t completed their vaccinations, and teens and adults whose childhood vaccines have worn off.

There are two main types of whooping cough vaccines: DTaP, which is given to children below 7 years of age and Tdap, which is given to children above 7 years of age and adults.

Any adult who didn’t get the Tdap vaccine as an adolescent should get it once. Note that this also applies to adults who were given the DTaP vaccine as kids.

In addition, adults should get the Td (tetanus, diphtheria) booster shot every 10 years. However, pregnant women should get the shot between 27 and 36 weeks.

HPV Vaccine

About 80 million people in the U.S. are currently infected with the HPV virus, and 14 million more people become infected every year. While most of these people do not develop symptoms or health problems, some of them develop cervical cancers.

The CDC recommends the HPV vaccine for women below 26 years of age and men below 21 years of age. So if you fall in this age range and haven’t gotten the vaccine, talk to your doctor about it.

Zoster Vaccine

About 1 million people in the U.S. get shingles every year, and half of those people are 60 years or older. This is because our immune systems weaken as we get older making us more vulnerable to certain diseases.

The zoster vaccine reduces the risk of developing shingles by 51%. Considering how painful and contagious shingles is, all adults above 60 years of age should talk with their doctor about getting this vaccine.

Pneumococcal Vaccine

The CDC also recommends pneumococcal vaccines for all adults over 65 years old. These shots protect against certain infections of the lungs and bloodstream.

Please note that while this post outlines the CDC’’s recommendations, it’s important to talk to your doctor before deciding to get any vaccine. Your doctor may also recommend other shots that aren’t mentioned here.

Vaccines are a controversial issue to some people. However, remember that you’re in charge of your life and, after doing your research and getting counsel from your primary care physician, you should do what you feel is best for your health.

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