Adult Immunizations: What Ones Do You Really Need?

While it’s well known that children require specific immunizations, many people don’t realize that adults do as well. That’s because there are certain diseases you could be exposed to through travel, your job or just going about your everyday life that you can protect yourself against with a immunizationvaccine. Many adults don’t get vaccinated, but receiving the necessary shots is key to protecting yourself and the people around you. The following is a guide to help you figure out which vaccines you should consider.

Every adult should get:

  • Seasonal flu vaccine: While it’s especially key for people with chronic health conditions, pregnant women and older adults, everyone should get a flu vaccine every year.
  • Td or Tdap vaccine: These protect against tetanus, diphtheria and, in the case of Tdap, pertussis. If you didn’t receive this shot as a child, you need it to protect against whooping cough. Women who are pregnant should receive the vaccine sometime between 27 and 36 weeks. That’s not all though. You’ll also need to get a tetanus booster shot every 10 years.

Younger adults should get:

  • HPV vaccine: This is a series of three shots and it’s recommended for women up to the age of 26 and men up to the age of 21.

Older adults should get:

  • Pneumococcal vaccines: This protects against infections in lungs and bloodstream, including pneumococcal disease. The CDC recommends that everyone over the age of 65 should get this vaccine.
  • Zoster vaccine: One million Americans get shingles every year, half of whom are over the age of 60. That’s why it’s recommended that if you’re older than 60, you get this vaccine, which can protect against shingles.

It’s important to consult your doctor before getting vaccinations, since several factors such as allergies, family history of seizures and more can affect whether you should get certain ones or not.

For more information on vaccinations, check out these blogs:

Photo credit: Blake Patterson (feature), Flu Immunization via Flickr (inset)

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