A little-known fact: August is National Immunization Awareness Month. For most families, this month is for school preparations and renewing of clothes supplies. But it also should be a month in which you think about the immunity of your loved ones. As we mentioned, most families focus on young ones and forget that the elderly also might need immunizations. Seniors need various vaccines, from those for shingles to those for whooping cough.
Many people, including both youngsters and older adults, suffer from ‘anti-vax’ movements. Their health has deteriorated because missing regular immunization left their immune system to weaken, which led to health issues. Earlier this year,Minneapolis has witnessed its first measles outbreak in thirty years. This was because people were afraid of getting vaccinated due to an unwarranted fear of causing autism.
In order to prevent situations like this from ever happening again, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services declared August as the month of National Immunization Awareness. Their goal is to raise awareness of the benefits of immunizations. They want to help people of all ages to better understand the vaccines they need to receive and the reasons behind them.
Immunizations, Health Concerns, and Older Adults
During this month, everyone who reads this should make sure that their loved ones understand the following list. Older adults might be aware of the benefits of some vaccines. But they might not know the benefits of all available vaccines.
Among other things, vaccinating can help seniors to prevent some of these health issues:
- Pertussis (Whooping Cough)
Both flu and pneumonia are conditions that can fall hard on anyone, but the older population is the one that can suffer the gravest consequences. By getting vaccinated in time, the elderly might avoid these illnesses. They could also make their bodies stronger when it is in the situation of fighting one of them.
Thanks to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), today more than ever, medical personnel know which vaccines they should talk about with their patients. Furthermore, the immunization toolkit helps elderly adults to more easily determine which vaccines they need the most and which are not necessary for them at the moment. This toolkit, which also contains The Adult Vaccine Quiz, identifies the required vaccines based on the age, health status, and travel plans of the patient.
Seniors shouldn’t decide which vaccines to receive on their own. They need to talk to their doctor. Based on the patient’s health status and medical history, the doctor will know which medicines a senior can and can’t receive. While most vaccines prevent the appearance of diseases, some of them can have an adverse effect on patients and harm them rather than help.
Below are some important warnings, because all vaccines are not for everyone.
- Adenovirus vaccine – This vaccine is not recommended for people who are older than 50. It should also not be given to those that are undergoing treatment for cancer.
- Allergies – You need to check whether you are allergic to any of the ingredients of a vaccine. The most well-known example is the universal flu vaccine which shouldn’t be received by people allergic to eggs.
- Guillain Barre – People who have this syndrome should avoid most of the standard immunizations. It is known that they can suffer grave consequences even from influenza and tetanus vaccines.
Immunizations for Traveling Seniors
Seniors who plan on traveling abroad should seriously consider getting all necessary vaccines. Are you planning to travel to exotic lands? You need to inquire about common diseases in that area for which a special vaccine may be needed.
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