Every year, influenza sickens millions of people. Flu shots have become an essential defense. But for children, a flu shot is more important than ever. Let’s explore why.
The flu is a contagious and acute respiratory illness that is caused by the influenza virus. It infects the nose, throat, and sometimes the lungs. Fall and winter are the critical times of the year, mainly because children spend more time indoors as the weather cools. And indoors means more chance of catching the virus. Here are some common flu symptoms:
A flu shot is your child’s best defense. It reduces the risk of illness and decreases the probability of hospitalization. Hand washing also helps. Teach your children to keep their hands out of their eyes, mouth, and nose.
Because flu strains differ every year, your child needs an annual vaccination. As a double whammy, we are also faced with the COVID-19 pandemic. Your child needs to be protected more than ever. Here’s why the flu shot is so critical:
Vaccines reduce the risks of getting a disease by working with your child’s natural defenses to build protection. When a child gets a vaccine, it boosts the immune system and lowers the likelihood of getting sick. It is important to note that a flu shot won’t guarantee your child won’t get the flu.. However, the symptoms will likely be milder than if your child wasn’t vaccinated at all.
Most children who get the flu will experience mild illness and recover in less than two weeks. However, the flu can also be particularly dangerous to some children. It can lead to hospitalization and some very severe consequences. Additionally, the flu might be worse in children who have chronic health problems such as asthma. Flu-related complications can be reduced by vaccination.
Your child can make other people sick. An infected child with mild symptoms might even pass the virus to others without even knowing they’re ill. The flu virus spreads through the air by coughing, sneezing, or talking. And as we know, children aren’t the best at covering their mouths when they cough or sneeze. Look, we can’t prevent every illness. But making sure your child gets a flu shot is a great first step.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, flu shots can be given to children who are 6 months and older. Furthermore, flu vaccines have a good safety record. Millions of Americans have safely received flu vaccines and there is extensive research supporting their safety. Although a flu shot has occasional side effects, they are generally mild and usually go away on their own within a few days.
Anyone is susceptible to the flu. Your child needs all the protection they need. It’s not too late for your child to get a flu shot. Children’s Medical Centers of Fresno provide quality healthcare to children of the Central Valley. Schedule your child’s appointment today and have your child vaccinated.