Flu and Adults
All adults should get an annual flu vaccine to protect themselves from flu.
Dangers of Flu in Adults
Even healthy and active adults can suffer from serious illness and complications from flu. For adults who have health conditions, the flu can pose an even more severe risk.
An otherwise healthy adult may end up hospitalized and suffer from loss of income, increased medical bills and even permanent health consequences that could have been avoided.
LONG TERM HEALTH EFFECTS
Even months after recovering from flu, adults remain at an increased risk of heart attack, stroke or other health disabilities.
Latasha was a healthy, active 34-year-old when what seemed like a simple illness turned into pneumonia and congestive heart failure brought on by the flu virus.
Benefits of Flu Vaccination in Adults:
Flu vaccination not only reduces our chances of suffering with a flu illness, but also reduces the likelihood of suffering with more serious flu outcomes.
Flu vaccination reduces risk of flu illnesses.
In seasons when the vaccine viruses is well matched to circulating strains, flu vaccine has been shown to reduce the risk of having to go to the doctor with flu by 40-60 percent. If you do happen to get sick despite being vaccinated, studies show that vaccination may reduce the severity of disease.
Flu vaccination reduces the risk of flu-associated hospitalization.
In recent years flu vaccines have reduced the risk of flu-associated hospitalizations among adults by about 40%.
A study showed that flu vaccination among adults from 2012 to 2015 reduced the risk of being admitted to an intensive care unit (ICU) with flu by 82%. And if you are hospitalized with flu, another study showed that vaccinated individuals were 59% less likely to be admitted to the ICU than those who had not been vaccinated.
Flu vaccination reduces the spread of flu.
Getting vaccinated helps ensure you don’t spread flu to others who are vulnerable to serious flu illness, like infants too young to be vaccinated, pregnant women, immunocompromised individuals, older family members, and people with certain chronic health conditions.
Which flu vaccines are recommended for adults?
Generally speaking, adults are able to receive any flu vaccine that is approved for use in their age group. However, there are two vaccines specifically designed for people 65 years of age and older, including a high dose flu vaccine and an adjuvanted flu vaccine.
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Page last reviewed: September 2020.