Senior Citizens & The Importance Of Flu Vaccine

It’s that time of year again. Days are shorter, the weather is chillier, and it seems as though everyone is catching a case of the sniffles. It’s true: with the onset of the colder weather, there is also the onset of the cold and influenza season.

During this time, it’s imperative that everyone get their flu vaccination; yet, it is most important that our older loved ones and senior citizens get vaccinated as well. The following will explore the flu vaccine, why our elders need it, and explore a new vaccination option that is being offered to the golden generation!

Think Ahead and Get the Flu Vaccine

One of the best ways to fight against a possible influenza strain is to get the flu vaccine. It’s important to note that the CDC recommends this for everyone over the age of six months. Whether you are a senior citizen in Chicago or living with home health care, the flu vaccine can help you fight against the cold season. 

It’s especially important to get vaccinated as a senior citizen because those who are 65 years and older are more susceptible to the symptoms of the flu. According to the CDC, senior citizens are the most affected demographic when it comes to influenza. With health issues such as asthma, liver problems, and diabetes, elderly individuals are more likely to suffer further complications from a bout of sickness.  

The Inclusion of the Fluzone High Dose Vaccine

To help aid against the tide of flu season, elderly individuals now have the fluzone high dose vaccination. This vaccine is comprised of the same three strains as a regular dosage, with a higher percentage of the virus antigen. 

In the typical vaccine, the antigen is utilized to activate antibodies to fight against the virus. Yet, with many elderly individuals, their antibodies react at a severe discrepancy. According to research conducted by the United States National Library of Medicine’s National Institute of Health (NCBI), the antibodies that were created by elderly individuals with the regular vaccine were 50% to 75% less than younger patients. 

Thus, to compensate for the discrepancy, the fluzone high dose vaccine increases the virus antigen fourfold. This is believed to help those over 65 fight against a possible strain of the flu. 

Although recommended, It’s important to note that this new vaccine is not mandatory. Those who would rather avoid the high dosage still have the option of the regular flu shot!