With age comes wisdom, but unfortunately, also a few more health risks. As adults become senior citizens, their immune systems can decline, making them more susceptible to illnesses and increasing the severity of the diseases. However, by staying up to date on immunizations and vaccines, seniors can keep healthy and prevent potential health problems.
Vaccines and immunizations specifically for seniors
Some immunizations and vaccines are specifically for seniors, while others are general and designed for administration every five to ten years or annually. Staying on top of these vaccinations benefits individuals by keeping them safe despite the prevalence of illnesses. Here are some immunizations and vaccines that are important for senior adults in Trinity, Hudson Oldsmar, and Tarpon Springs:
- Influenza vaccine. Also known as the flu shot, this vaccine is highly recommended for all adults across the US. For seniors, it ranks high in importance as they are more likely to experience severe complications from the flu.
- Pneumococcal vaccine. This immunization is crucial for all adults over 65 as it helps protect against pneumonia, a severe lung infection.
- Herpes zoster vaccine. Also called the shingles vaccine, this immunization is essential for everyone above 60. It helps to protect seniors from developing a painful rash known as shingles.
Vaccines and immunizations administered every five or ten years
As people age, our immunity can decline, meaning that some vaccinations and immunizations administered as children or young adults may no longer be effective. In such instances, healthcare professionals administer vaccines periodically to keep the immune system strong and the body healthy. For elderlies in Trinity, Hudson Oldsmar, and Tarpon Springs, these vaccines are crucial as they often mean less risk of developing severe complications from diseases. Some of these vaccines and immunizations include:
- Tetanus. Also known as the lockjaw vaccine, this immunization protects against bacteria that cause painful muscle spasms. In the US, the CDC recommends everyone, including seniors, receive the Tetanus vaccine every ten years.
- Diphtheria. Diphtheria is another bacteria-based disease preventable by vaccination. The vaccine is typically given in combination with the Tetanus vaccine and needs to be received every ten years.
- Pertussis. Also known as whooping cough, Pertussis is a highly contagious disease that can cause violent coughing fits. The vaccine is administered once.
Immunizations that prevent illnesses
Other annual immunizations can help protect against illnesses that can compromise seniors' health and immune systems, leading to complications. These include:
- Flu Shot: As mentioned before, the flu shot is a vital annual immunization for all adults, especially seniors.
- Pneumococcal vaccine: This immunization protects against Streptococcus Pneumoniae, a bacteria that can cause severe respiratory infections like pneumonia.
- Herpes zoster vaccine: Also called the shingles vaccine, this immunization helps to protect seniors from developing the painful rash known as shingles.
It is also worth mentioning that aside from these vaccinations, there are also others known as travel vaccinations. These are vaccines administered during travel to help prevent the contraction of the disease. For example, a senior citizen traveling to a place like Palm Harbor or Land O' Lakes might need some of these immunizations with the permission of a medical professional.
Seek out Senior Helpers
Senior Helpers is a national organization in New Port Richey that provides in-home care and assistance to seniors. With operations in places like Wesley Chapel, Pasco/Pinellas, Trinity, Hudson Oldsmar, and Tarpon Springs, our compassionate caregivers can help with numerous tasks, including transportation, light housekeeping, meals, and medication reminders. Our mission is to ensure that every senior we serve enjoys the highest quality of life possible. If you or a loved one needs assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us today.