Influenza (flu) is a nasty illness that can create havoc with a person’s routine and health. The flu is easily spread from person to person through sneezing and coughing. You will certainly know if you have the flu. Common symptoms include exhaustion, fever, coughing, muscle aches, runny nose, and chills. It can be hard to even move from the bed to the bathroom if you get the flu.
Elderly adults and young children are at risk of complications including pneumonia, croup, and myocarditis (inflamed heart tissue.) Typically, the flu causes more than 148,000 hospitalizations and 36,000 deaths every year.
The vaccine is 90% effective in healthy adults and 70% effective for the elderly and children. Those with ailments or conditions will find the vaccination is between 50 and 70% effective.
There are pros and cons to the vaccine for Influenza. First, the pharmaceutical companies have to make educated guesses into which flu strain will hit that upcoming winter.
If different strains are spread, the flu shot then becomes ineffective. Another issue that occurs commonly is the availability of the vaccine. High-risk individuals are always offered the vaccine first before it is given to the remainder of the population.
In many states, the vaccine is never made available to the rest of the public because the vaccines are used on the high-risk individuals first and by the time additional vaccines are available, the flu season is nearing completion (December through March).
Despite the risk, it is essential that children between the ages of six months and two years become vaccinated every year. Elderly adults and those with illnesses (diabetes, asthma, kidney disorder, and cystic fibrosis) should get a flu vaccine every year.
It can help save their lives. These age groups have a harder time fighting off the disease naturally if they acquire it. All it takes is one quick shot followed by a twenty-minute waiting period to ensure there is no allergic reaction to the vaccination’s ingredients.
The most common complaint by those who have received the vaccination is tenderness at the site of the injection. Less than 1% of those receiving the vaccination become feverish and feel ill, this happens more often in children.