A lot of people think of “the flu” as a very bad cold. Sure, many of us get over it fine, but we tend to forget that when it strikes (sometimes twice a year!), it can hit like a Mack truck!
The flu is one of the most common viral infections that attack everyone—young and old—some worse than others, particularly older adults. And if you’ve ever received a flu shot, you know that last season’s shot is no longer effective this season. So, here are seven reasons why you need your flu shot this year.
Number 1: Baby Boomers and Elderly Seniors are at High Risk
The flu can become risky for everyone, but as you get older your immune system slows down and your defense weakens. For this reason Baby Boomers and the elderly tend to fall in the high risk group for hospitalization caused by severe complications. Getting your flu shot works as an insurance policy against possible pneumonia and other lung diseases.
Number 2: Asthmatics and Seniors with Respiratory Conditions Suffer More!
Seniors with pre-existing conditions such as asthmatics, diabetics and allergy-sufferers need the vaccine or nasal spray. The risks increase exponentially with these prevailing conditions, while age adds another layer of vulnerability.
Number 3: You are Vulnerable to Influenza More than Once this Season!
In the United States, the flu season spans October through May, reaching a peak in January or February. If you’ve had the flu recently, you can get it again from another viral strain. Get the flu shot to prevent facing it twice!
Number 4: Your Flu Shot Acts like a Reliable Shield
According to the CDC you are 60% less likely to need treatment for the flu once you get the shot. It is considered by the healthcare sector to be the best safeguard against the flu each season.
Number 5: The Flu Shot is Covered by Medicare
Medicare covers the flu shot. And, under the Affordable Care Act, insurers are obligated to provide certain preventive services, like the flu vaccine, at no cost to you.
Number 6: It’s Contagious – Can be Spread to Caregivers and Peers!
In senior living and assisted living communities, the spread of the virus in such high-risk environments can be devastating.
Also, those caring for you are at risk of contracting the virus from air droplets from coughs and sneezes.
Number 7: It’s Safe!
The flu vaccine is closely monitored by the CDC and the Food and drug administration to ensure its safety, minimizing the potential for an epidemic. The vaccine has a very good safety record and in senior living communities this is a welcomed benefit.
Holiday gatherings tend to bring together people who are especially vulnerable to the flu virus. Because you are at increased risk for the virus, protect yourself by getting your flu shot this season.
About Marissa Salvesen
My journey into the world of senior living began when I started working for United Methodist Homes in 2010. Starting as an Activities Director at one of our-winning assisted and independent living communities and then transitioning to Marketing and Promotions Manager for UMH, I now work as the Manager of Mission Development, fostering the Mission and Values of our organization. I love sharing stories about the many ways we build meaningful relationships and enrich the lives of those we serve, and am proud to be part of building UMH’s 140-year legacy of caring. Wondering what makes our communities such special places to live and work? Connect with me and find out!
Connect with Marissa Salvesen
Our Blog is a 2016 Platinum Generations Award Winner! The Generations Award is an annual international competition for excellence in senior marketing recognizing professionals who have communicated to the 50+ Mature Markets.