Has Your Child Gotten Their Flu Shot?

You’ve probably seen the headlines about how the 2020-2021 flu season is going to be complicated by the COVID-19 pandemic. After all, COVID-19 has been dominating headlines for months. 

Now that flu season is here and COVID-19 cases are increasing across the country, it’s more important than ever to protect your family’s health. Every year 5-20% of Americans get the flu, resulting in 31.4 million visits to the doctor and over 900,000 hospital admissions. 

Around 80,000 people die from the flu every year. 

Our physicians here at Village Pediatric Group in Tuckahoe, New York, highly recommend bringing your children in for their annual flu shot. We’re committed to helping you, your family, and our wider community stay safe and healthy through flu season and beyond. 

We want to share information and advice about the flu and the importance of flu shots to help you make informed health care choices. 

Preventing and fighting the flu

Flu shots are crucial for preventing this potentially dangerous illness. The flu is a rapidly mutating virus, which means that it changes from year to year. Medical experts track the flu and predict which strain is going to be prevalent each year. Then they create a vaccine for the specific viral strains.

Some groups are more likely to develop flu complications, such as the elderly and children under 5. And anyone with a chronic health issue such as asthma, diabetes, kidney disease, or heart disease has an elevated risk of complications. 

We recommend that everyone get an annual flu shot, except infants younger than six months and people with compromised immune systems or legitimate allergies to a vaccine ingredient. 

These vaccinations don’t just protect your children and your family. They protect everyone in your community. 

By preventing the spread of illness, you avoid spreading the disease to everyone you and your child encounter, including grandparents, teachers, and health care providers. You also help the few people who can’t have vaccinations stay safe. 

Get vaccinated early in flu season

The flu season usually starts in the autumn and lasts until late spring, peaking between December and February. The earlier you and your family get flu shots, the better. We recommend that you have your child vaccinated by the end of October at the latest. 

It can take up to two weeks after receiving the flu shot for your child’s immune system to produce enough antibodies to protect them from illness. Early vaccination provides the best chance of season-long protection. 

As flu activity begins to increase in the autumn, you want to protect your child for the full six months of the season. 

That said, it’s possible to get a flu shot too early. If you and your family get vaccinated in the late summer, you might end up with reduced protection later in the flu season. 

The flu vaccine won’t make you sick

There are some long-standing misconceptions about immunizations, including the flu vaccine. For example, some people mistakenly believe that the flu vaccine will give your child the flu. This isn’t true — the flu vaccine contains either inactivated virus or single proteins from the virus.   

That said, some people, including children, have some mild side effects after receiving a vaccine, such as fatigue, a low-grade fever, or body aches. If these side effects occur, they typically emerge within a day of receiving the vaccine and subside within a day or two. 

Schedule your family’s flu shots today

We’re here to protect your family’s health. This flu season, plan early to keep your child and your family members protected all season long by scheduling your flu shots today. 

Even if you can’t get the flu vaccine until early November, your child can still benefit from getting a flu shot. Partial seasonal protection is better than no protection at all. 

Contact us today for flu shots and compassionate pediatric health care. We’re committed to protecting your health and have comprehensive COVID-19 precautions in place.

You Might Also Enjoy...

We've renovated our office!

Patient care is our priority at Village Pediatric Group, we have renovated location and are looking forward to your visit!