If you haven’t gotten your flu vaccine yet this year, you should make it a priority, especially before the nation’s flu season peaks in January and February. It’s not too late—getting a flu shot any time during flu season in the Northern Atlanta area will reduce your risk of getting the flu. And, in fact, it could be a matter of life and death. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in the U.S. about 23,000 people die from the flu each year, and older adults are even more vulnerable to complications from the flu.
There’s a pool of myths regarding the flu vaccination, but regardless of the multitude of falsehoods, flu and pneumonia combined consistently rank among the top 10 causes of death in the U.S., according to the CDC. So it is critical to know the facts about the flu, and getting a flu shot is truly crucial because it can greatly reduce a person’s risk of contracting the flu.
It is true that some years the flu vaccine is better matched to current flu strains than other years, but it is still worth it to get vaccinated every year, as vaccination is the most reliable way to reduce the risk for illness. And you should get one each year because the circulating strains change and immunity from the vaccine fades. On the up side, flu shots also reduce the risk of heart attack, stroke, and other heart problems.
This year, flu vaccination options include a shot that protects against three different flu viruses, including two influenza A viruses (an H1N1 and an H3N2) and an influenza B virus, according to the World Health Organization. And adults ages 65 and older have the option to get a high-dose flu shot; but consult with your doctor before you opt for this option.
Once you get the flu shot, continue to safeguard yourself from the flu by washing your hands, as people can pick up the virus on their fingers and carry it to the nose, mouth and eyes. Remember to wash your hands the right way—scrub for at least 20 seconds (the length of humming the Happy Birthday song, twice) using soap and water.
At Regency Home Care of North Atlanta, we are committed to ensuring our Atlanta-based clients and family caregivers are aware of the risk factors and preventative measures of the flu. In fact, our managed home care services include running errands, including personal care assistance and appointment setting. Our home care services provide the support needed to allow you to remain safe and healthy. Contact us today to find out more about the Regency home health care services that we offer.