Many seniors have the preconceived notion that vaccinations are only for children. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, thousands of adults become seriously ill each year and are hospitalized due to preventable diseases, some of which are deadly. To safeguard against a serious illness or infection, make sure you are fully vaccinated. Consider these vaccinations that are recommended for adults.
The CDC recommends that everyone over the age of six months should get a flu vaccine every year. This is especially true for young children, seniors and anyone with a chronic health condition. Each flu season is different from the last and can affect individuals differently. The flu vaccine prevents thousands to tens of thousands of flu-related deaths. The flu vaccine reduces the risk of flu illness, hospitalization and flu-related deaths in children. It takes approximately two weeks for the body to develop immunity after the shot is administered, so it's best to receive the vaccination in early fall to ensure maximum protection.
The Tdap is a vaccination that combines tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis shots in one. All three of these diseases can cause death or extreme illness. Tetanus is a nerve ailment caused by the bacterium Clostridium tetani. These spores are found most often in cultivated soil, house dust and animal excrements. Exposure can cause sustained muscle contractions, most notably referred to as lockjaw.
Diphtheria is an infection that makes it difficult to breathe. It can cause heart and nerve damage, and pertussis (or whooping cough) is a contagious respiratory infection that can result in severe breathing problems.
Hepatitis B vaccinations are recommended for adults who have diabetes or those with existing liver problems. Caused by the hepatitis B virus, this disease causes serious problems to the liver, including cirrhosis and cancer. Transmission occurs with contact from blood, semen or other bodily fluid from an infected individual.
Shingles are caused by the same bacteria that causes chickenpox. This herpes vaccine is recommended for all adults age 50 and older. Shingles cause a painful rash that usually develops on one side of the body, typically on the face or the torso. This rash forms blisters that scab over within seven to ten days and clears up within two to four weeks. Your risk of getting shingles increases as you get older.
Pneumococcal disease is most common in young children, but there is a greater risk for serious illness in older adults. It is an infection caused by the streptococcus pneumonia bacteria. The CDC recommends the vaccination for all children age two and older and all adults 65 and older.
At Autumn View Gardens in Ellisville, we offer individualized care plans to ensure you receive the proper immunizations and care. To learn more about what our community has to offer, contact us today.
Bethesda Foundaion is not associated with the Bethesda Health Group of St. Louis, MO.