Everyone 6 months old and older should get a flu vaccine every year
Here are some things to consider when making a decision about whether to get a flu vaccine. Every year, the flu causes an average of 36,000 deaths and more than 200,000 flu-related hospitalizations.
Are you young and healthy?
- Getting a flu vaccine is a part of a healthy lifestyle, just like eating well and exercising.
- It protects others. Even if you don’t get very sick with the flu, you can still give it to someone who is at higher risk of serious illness.
Are you pregnant?
- During pregnancy your immune system changes and you can’t fight the flu easily. You’ll have a higher risk of serious flu complications.
- Unborn babies can be seriously harmed by the flu.
- There also is a risk of pregnancy loss.
Do you have diabetes?
- If you have diabetes and get the flu, you are at risk of serious complications.
- Diabetes makes it harder for your body to fight germs and sickness. The flu also can make your diabetes worse.
- Getting sick can make it harder for your body to control blood sugar.
- About 30 percent of those who are hospitalized with the flu have diabetes.
Do you have asthma or COPD?
- People who have asthma or COPD are at risk of serious flu complications.
- Your airways are already sensitive and swollen. The flu can make this worse.
- Flu in the lungs can cause asthma attacks and make your symptoms worse.
- You also are more likely to get pneumonia after the flu than those who don’t have asthma.
If you have questions about the flu or the flu shot, email email@example.com or call 1-800-355-0885. We are available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. MT.
- CDC. Workplace health promotion: Flu & Pneumonia. cdc.gov/workplacehealthpromotion/healthstrategies/flu-pneumonia/index.html
- Nowak. Promoting influenza vaccination: Insights from a qualitative meta-analysis of 14 years of influenza-related communications research by U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
- CDC. Pregnant Women & Influenza (Flu). cdc.gov/flu/highrisk/pregnant.htm
- CDC. Flu and People with Diabetes. cdc.gov/flu/highrisk/diabetes.htm
- CDC. Flu and People with Asthma. cdc.gov/flu/highrisk/asthma.htm