Home Care in Pennsylvania
Whether a cold or the flu develops, any illness can be serious once someone reaches the age of 65. The reason behind the severity of getting sick as an elder is because the immune system becomes weaker with age, causing the body to be defenseless against infections, germs, and bacteria. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that an estimated 80 to 90 percent of seasonal flu-related deaths occurred in people over 65 and older, as well as taking up 50 to 70 percent of flu-related hospitalizations. The best way this age group can ward off the flu is through a yearly vaccine. These vaccinations are especially important for older adults who receive elder care for other health conditions, making them more susceptible to illnesses, but if you are still wondering if your loved one should get a flu vaccine this year, here are some benefits of the shot that may make your decision a little easier.
- Flu prevention. The most obvious reason to get the flu shot is because it is the most effective way to prevent the flu. It is also important that anyone who spends time with this elder also get a flu vaccine in order to prevent passing the influenza virus to them.
- Reduces the risk of hospitalizations. A study was conducted that determined the flu vaccine was associated with a 77 percent reduction of hospitalizations among those adults over the age of 50 during the 2011-2012 flu season. Seniors with chronic health problems can especially see a difference in the amount of emergency room visits they have to make by getting the vaccine. It has been proven to lower the chances of a cardiac event among people with heart disease, while also reducing hospitalizations among those with diabetes and lung disease.
- Lessens the symptoms of the flu. If your loved ones do get the flu, their symptoms will be much less serious than those who do not get the vaccine. This also holds true for those seniors who have a serious health condition.
- Increases ability to live independently. The flu vaccine is not perfect and differs for everyone, depending on their health and strength of their immune system, but there is strong evidence to show that a yearly vaccine will reduce the risk of death and severe complications.
- Prevents the current influenza virus. Each year, there seems to be a new influenza virus that is affecting the nation. The flu vaccine is designed to protect against the latest virus in order to protect your loved one from getting sick.
The flu vaccine may work for some and not others, but what you can expect is for it to help protect your loved one against serious health complications that could lead to hospitalizations and even death. By getting the vaccine, frequently washing your hands, and a healthy diet will help keep your loved one from getting the flu.
If you are considering hiring elderly care services in Pennsylvania, call the caring staff at Extended Family Care of PA at (888) 660-6478.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “What You Should Know and Do this Flu Season If You Are 65 Years and Older.”
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Vaccine Effectiveness – How Well Does the Flu Vaccine Work?”