Did You Get Your Flu Shot Yet?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the flu vaccination prevented over 13 million cases of the flu in the U.S. from 2005 to 2011. If you have ever had a bout of influenza, you know that it can really knock you out. And this becomes especially hazardous as we age. During a regular flu season, about 90 percent of deaths occur in people 65 years and older.

There are several flu vaccine options for the 2013-2014 flu season.

Traditional flu vaccines made to protect against three different flu viruses (called “trivalent” vaccines) are available. In addition, this season flu vaccines made to protect against four different flu viruses (called “quadrivalent” vaccines) also are available.

The trivalent flu vaccine protects against two influenza A viruses and an influenza B virus. The quadrivalent flu vaccine will protect against two influenza A viruses and two influenza B viruses. CDC does not recommend one flu vaccine over the other. This includes deciding between trivalent or quadrivalent vaccine or between injection (the flu shot) or nasal spray vaccine. The important thing is to get a flu vaccine every year.

Talk to your doctor or nurse about the best options for you and your loved ones. The “seasonal flu season” in the United States can begin as early as October and last as late as May so now is a very good time to get the vaccine if you have not already done so.

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