Before your holiday schedule gets too hectic—if it hasn’t already—one important thing you should add to your to-do list is getting a flu vaccine. This week is actually National Influenza Vaccination Week, which means that you’re likely to see a lot of media and other promotional events and notices encouraging you to get a flu vaccine. And for good reason, as influenza levels are increasing across the country.
While you may think that the flu vaccine is really only relevant for the young, the elderly and certain at-risk groups, the CDC actually recommends an annual flu vaccine for everyone over 6 months old. And there are lots of options in terms of where to get vaccinated and what type of vaccine to get. Of course, there is the flu shot, but if shots scare you away, then you should also know about the option of a flu nasal spray, which is available for individuals between the ages of 2 and 49.
A flu vaccine is a low risk, high reward way to make sure you and your loved ones stay healthy through this holiday season and into the New Year. While some years there are limited supplies available, causing hospitals, pharmacies and other providers to focus only on high-risk groups, this year there is still plenty of the vaccine available and everyone should take a few minutes to take this precaution.
If you are curious where you can get a flu vaccine in your community, the CDC has put together a website where you can search for places offering the flu vaccine by zip code.