As the weather is turning colder, unfortunately that also means that flu season is upon us. Flu season usually starts in the fall and ends in the spring. Influenza or “The Flu” is an illness caused by a respiratory virus. The flu can spread rapidly through schools, homes, and communities. This year with COVID-19, it is especially important to protect your children from influenza. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that everyone over the age of 6 months needs a flu vaccination every year. Children 6 months through 8 years old should receive two doses of the vaccine given at least four weeks apart. Getting a flu vaccine is the best way to prevent getting the flu.
The Pediatric Center will be hosting flu vaccination clinics beginning this week! Please contact The Pediatric Center for an appointment for your flu vaccine as we are unable to accept walk-ins this year. Here are the dates:
Oct 12-14th: 8-12, 1-5
Oct 15th: 8-12, 1-3
Oct 16th: 8-12, 1-5
Oct 19th-23rd: 8-12, 1-5
The Flu Vaccine is especially important for:
- Children 6 months-5 years of age
- Children with chronic medical conditions
- All contacts and care providers of children with high risk conditions and children younger than 5 years
- All health care personnel
- All women who are pregnant, are considering becoming pregnant, have recently delivered, or are breastfeeding during flu season
What kind of flu vaccine should I get?
All flu vaccines available for children this year contain 4 flu virus strains: two influenza A and two influenza B virus strains. The “flu shot” given by injection in the muscle contains the inactivated (killed) vaccine. The live-attenuated nasal spray vaccine can also be used for influenza vaccination this season. There is no preference for a product or formulation.
There are few side effects from the flu vaccine, but they may include:
- Redness, soreness, or swelling at the injection site for the flu shot
- Runny Nose, Congestion, and Sore throat for the nasal spray vaccine
The flu virus spreads easily through the air with coughing and sneezing, as well as touching things like doorknobs or toys and then touching your eyes, nose, or mouth. Safe vaccines are made each year and the best time to get yours is by the end of October, before the virus starts spreading in your community.
There will be more dates for flu vaccination clinics to come! Contact The Pediatric Center to make an appointment. Remember, getting a flu vaccination is the best way to protect yourself and your loved ones from influenza!
Some content provided by healthychildren.org.
Disclaimer: This information is not intended be a substitute for professional medical advice. It is provided for educational purposes only. You assume full responsibility for how you choose to use this information.