Immunizations aren’t just for children. Pre-teens, teenagers and adults also need immunizations to keep protected from infection. The vaccine preventable diseases haven’t left us. They are still out there waiting for a host. Watching and waiting and ready to pounce on a vulnerable person who hasn’t been vaccinated against the disease they carry. This unvaccinated, unsuspecting person can get infected and pass it on to others. Planes are circling the globe constantly and this makes it even scarier with the ease of how a disease could travel and spread in a 24-hour period. Where is my scared, wide-eyed, unsmiling emogi when I need it? I definitely could use it now.
We talk about diet and exercise to keep ourselves healthy, but you can also add immunizations to that list. Whether it’s a yearly flu shot for every age group, or a vaccine recommended if certain risk factors or health conditions are present, it’s important that we protect ourselves and the ones we love. For some at-risk people, this could actually mean the difference between life and death.
Vaccinations are available at your primary care office, pharmacy, health department and many other locations. Currently vaccinations are covered by health insurance, whether it’s a private carrier, Health Insurance Marketplace, Medicare, Medicaid or military plan. Hopefully that never changes.
Data shows that vaccines are held to the strongest standard of safety. Vaccine information statements are required to be given at each vaccination with benefits, risks and potential side effects listed. This information is available in other languages if needed. Be an informed consumer and read up on what you’re getting and get any questions answered.
The CDC website has everything you need to learn about vaccines. There is a recommended, printable schedule for all ages that is grouped into the 3 categories below:
- Infants and Children (birth through 6 years old)
- Preteens and Teens (7 – 18 years old)
- Adults (19 years and older)
Let Immunization Awareness Month be the reminder to talk to your health care provider for any questions about recommended vaccines for yourself and your children. Why take the chance of getting something when there is a vaccine against it? Get those vaccinations as soon as possible. Your co-workers and family members - children, grandchildren, parents - will be happy you did.