To vaccinate or not to vaccinate? This has been a hot topic for years, debated by doctors, celebrities, politicians, parents and even kids.
The proven, science-based fact is this: immunizations are crucial to your health.
Immunizations protect our children from many of the infectious diseases that killed or disabled children just a few decades ago. They also help the vaccinated individual protect others who are unvaccinated, such as babies, and protect those who need protection from infectious disease such as pregnant women, cancer patients and immunocompromised individuals.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), vaccines are very safe and only given to children after careful review by scientists, doctors and healthcare professionals.
But what about immunizations for adults, you ask? They are just as important.
Being a grown up is an endless cycle of multitasking. Sometimes we forget to add water to the coffee machine or show up to the office with our shirts inside out. So, it’s not surprising that some of us may forget or just skip our own vaccinations.
Every year, thousands of adults become ill from the flu and other vaccine-preventable diseases. Some vaccines can wear off over time, while others are recommended for certain age groups.
Organizations like the CDC and the American Academy of Family Physicians recommend the following immunizations:
- Flu: yearly, all adults
- Tdap: every 10 years, all adults
- HPV: single dose, adults under age 26
- Shingles: single dose, adults over 50
- Pneumococcal: two doses, adults over 65
The vaccine is one of the most important medical discoveries of our lifetime and one of the greatest public health success stories. Vaccines have greatly reduced the infection rate of diseases like measles, diphtheria whooping cough, and they will continue to be our most important tool in the fight against preventable disease in the future.
For more information, visit the CDC Vaccines and Immunizations website.