It's Flu Season

Hard to believe it’s fall already but along with the beautiful fall colors and crisp weather comes the necessity of keeping updated on your immunizations, especially for the elderly.  While there are always health issues we watch for as we age, the flu and pneumonia combine to rank seventh on the list of leading causes of death among our elderly (according to the Center for Disease Control).

Fortunately, there are ways to combat these preventable diseases – make sure your loved ones get their flu and pneumonia vaccines.  Not only are flu shots recommended but a few others as well.  Here’s a brief list (compiled by the CDC):

  • Shingles – not only does it appear as a painful blistering skin rash, but it can also cause additional problems, like fever, hearing loss, and vision problems.  
  • Flu - there are three different types of flu vaccinations, but the only one recommended for seniors is a specially-designed, high-dose shot. The higher dosage is said to offer the elderly more protection than the traditional flu shot, and doesn't expose an older adult to the live virus, like the nasal spray vaccine would.
  • Pneumonia – the elderly is more likely to contract pneumonia especially if they’ve been in and out of the hospital. 

Other recommended vaccines include MMR, DPT and Chickenpox.  As always, please consult with your physician to determine what is best for your family.