Why the Flu Vaccine Should be on Your To-Do List this Fall
It is anticipated that this year’s flu season will be worse than last year. The main reason is that last year we were social distancing and wearing masks, which protected against viruses. This year, with lifted COVID restrictions, we lack the protection that kept us relatively healthy.
One of the best things you can do to help protect your kids from illness this season is to vaccinate them against the flu. The flu can not only make your child sick and put others at risk of getting sick, but it can also be deadly.
This blog will answer some of the most common questions about this year’s flu vaccine.
Who should receive the flu vaccine?
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that everyone aged 6 months and up receive the flu vaccine. Children six months through eight years old who are getting the flu vaccine for the first time or who received only one dose before July 1, 2022, should receive two doses four weeks apart.
What flu shot is available for children this year?
Depending on your child’s age and health status, they may receive either the inactivated influenza vaccine (IIV) injected into the muscle or the attenuated influenza vaccine (LAIV), a nasal spray.
When should my child receive the flu vaccine?
The CDC recommends that the flu vaccine be administered by the end of October. However, getting the vaccine later in the season is acceptable if they cannot receive it before.
What type of vaccine is Rainbow Pediatrics offering this year?
This year, we will only offer the inactivated influenza vaccine, the traditional flu shot.
Can my child receive the flu shot at the same time as they receive their COVID-19 booster?
Your child’s pediatric provider may recommend waiting two weeks between vaccines. They may also recommend that your child not receive the flu vaccine at the same time as their scheduled immunizations. Talk with them to find out their specific recommendations.
Does the vaccine protect against the flu immediately?
It can take up to two weeks to build an immune response in the body. Therefore, it is wise that your child receives their flu shot earlier in the season, if possible.
My child has an egg allergy. Should they receive the vaccine?
Scientists develop the flu vaccine in embryonated chicken eggs. Therefore, the vaccine contains trace amounts of egg protein. If your child has an egg allergy, contact our office to receive a recommendation from your child’s provider.
Is the flu shot safe for women who are pregnant?
Yes. It is recommended that all women who are pregnant receive the flu vaccine at any time during their pregnancy. However, receiving the vaccine early in the season is ideal.
How do I schedule my child for the flu shot this year?
As of the writing of this blog, the flu shot is not currently available in our office. We will announce its arrival on our social media pages (Instagram and Facebook). We will also email everyone on our contact list, alerting them of its arrival. You can also contact our office for more details on scheduling the vaccination.