Many pediatricians suggest parents have their children as young as six months old be inoculated with the flu vaccine to reduce the risk of catching the influenza virus. Influenza or more commonly known as flu is an illness that infects a person’s nose, throat, and sometimes the lungs. It’s very contagious and can affect anyone, regardless of age. If your kids catch the flu, they can suffer from mild to severe symptoms including fever, cough, headaches, fatigue, muscle or body pains, runny or stuffy nose, vomiting, and diarrhea.
Although you can buy medicine online Philippines doctors recommend to alleviate the symptoms of the flu, they might get worse. In such cases, your kids might need to spend a couple of nights in the hospital, which can be an unpleasant experience for any child. That said, it’s important to do everything you can to guard your children against the illness and its symptoms. And one way to do that is by getting them a flu shot. Apart from protecting your child from becoming gravely ill, here are five other reasons why you need to line up your kids for a flu shot every year.
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Flu Can Develop into a Serious Illness
As mentioned previously, common flu symptoms can be managed with the proper medication. However, this doesn’t mean you should take the flu lightly because it can lead children to develop more serious complications. That’s because the younger the children are, the less mature their immune systems are. This puts them at risk of experiencing severe symptoms if they contract the flu. They can have severe bacterial infections or pneumonia, which can lead to hospitalization or, worse, flu-related death.
Moreover, infants and children with asthma, other lung diseases, heart problems, and other chronic illnesses are at higher risk of developing serious complications. But if your kids receive the flu vaccine, they can reduce the likelihood of developing severe symptoms, getting admitted to a hospital, or contracting the illness completely.
It’s the Best Way to Prevent Seasonal Flu
Although the flu virus is present all year round, cases of flu rise during the rainy season and colder months. This is due to the fluctuation in the temperature and because the rhinovirus associated with the common cold increase when the temperature is colder. As such, more people get sick with the flu. And if your child is surrounded by people who have the virus, they might catch it too.
The flu virus is passed from one person to another through sneezing or coughing. It can also live on some surfaces for a short time like doorknobs, toys, and countertops. When your child touched their mouth, eyes, or nose after touching something that was touched by an infected person, they can experience some symptoms. If you want to reduce the chances of this from happening, it’s a good idea to have your kids inoculated with the flu vaccine.
Flu Spreads Easily Among Kids
With more schools allowing face-to-face classes, your kids are more exposed to adults and children who can be infected with the flu virus, and this can increase their risk of becoming ill. Also, flu tends to spread quickly among children. That’s because they aren’t as cautious as adults. They often share toys, pencils, pens, and other objects with other children. They might not frequently wash their hands too, which is another effective way to prevent them from getting sick.
While your kids need to receive proper education, you must also arm their health with the right protection. Thus, it’s important to line up your kids for their flu shot as soon as it’s available.
It Helps Reduce the Spread of the Virus at Home
Aside from protecting your children from getting infected by the flu virus, the flu vaccine also helps protect you and other people they interact with. Since vaccinating your children makes them less likely to get sick with the flu, it also lowers their chances of spreading the virus. This is very important especially if there are other vulnerable people in your household such as elders and other children too young to receive the vaccine.
Last Year’s Shot Isn’t Enough
Another reason you need to line up your kids for a flu shot is that they need this year’s protection. Unlike other vaccines that offer your kids protection for most of their lives, they need to get the flu vaccine every year because flu viruses change. Sometimes, last year’s vaccine won’t be able to protect kids from the most current types of the flu virus. Thus, they need to get vaccinated every year.
Additionally, protection from the vaccine generally lasts less than a year so it’s a good idea to update your kids’ shots. This applies to children of all ages and infants six months and older.
By lining up your kids to receive their flu shot, you can protect them from becoming severely ill. Make sure to talk to your doctor about the best time to get your kids vaccinated. While at it, ask about how to get yourself and your entire family vaccinated.
I am Dr. Yenny Angela, a medical graduate from Hannover Medical School. I have expertise in emergency medicine and care for patients with multiple injuries. Also, I am a researcher always on the lookout for new scientific findings. I also have a publication on Researchgate.com.