February 12, 2022

A Guide to Vaccinations if You’re Over 50

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With all of the talk over the past year-plus being about the COVID-19 vaccine, it’s important for those over 50 to be current on all of their vaccinations—not just the ones that have come into existence in the last 18 months!

To make things easier for you, Centers Health Care has a breakdown of the vaccinations, in addition to COVID-19, that the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend for most older adults.

Shingles

Shingles is a painful condition that around one in every three people will get. It’s not only a painful, blistering rash, but it can also cause nerve damage that can last for months. Your risk also increases as you get older, especially if you had chicken pox as a child.

Fortunately, a shingles vaccine is a one-time round of two shots that are given anywhere from two to six months apart.

Influenza (Flu)

Of everyone hospitalized by complications from the flu, 60% are 65 and older. A standard dose is given to people up to 64 years of age, and those 65 and older receive a high-dose vaccine. Much like COVID-19, flu complications tend to be worse in those with pre-existing health problems, so it’s important to stay immunized. The updated flu shot is generally available in the fall.

Pneumonia

A bad case of the flu or COVID-19 can result in pneumonia, which usually means a trip to the hospital and can even be fatal. It can be especially problematic for those who smoked, have lung disease, or heart problems. A one-time single shot is usually enough of a vaccine for most adults. Some people with certain conditions need two shots spaced eight weeks apart, so be sure to talk to your doctor.

Tetanus/Diphtheria/Pertussis

This shot, commonly known as a Tdap, is given once every 10 years throughout your life. If you suffer a puncture wound five or more years since your last vaccination, you’ll need your booster at that point instead of waiting the full 10 years.

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