3 Important Reasons Adults and Teens Should Get Vaccinated
Immunizations aren’t just for young children. They are needed throughout our lifetime to protect our health and reduce the chance of complications that may result from preventable diseases.
September is National Immunization Awareness Month. This is great time to make sure you and your family have received the necessary vaccines to stay healthy.
Lebauer primary care providers can guide you through the specific vaccines you or your teen may need.
1. Vaccines Can Wear Off Over Time
Even if you were fully vaccinated as a child, the protection from some vaccines you received can wear off over time. Check with your physician to see if you are due for a booster of any vaccines.
2. Reduce Your Chance of Serious Illness
You may be at risk for serious diseases that are still common in the U.S. Each year thousands of adults in the United States suffer serious health problems from diseases that could be prevented by vaccines. Vaccines work with your body’s natural defense to reduce the chances of getting certain diseases as well as suffering complications from these diseases.
3. Protect Your Loved Ones
Vaccines also reduce your chance of spreading certain diseases. Infants, older adults, and people with weakened immune systems (like those undergoing cancer treatment) are especially vulnerable to vaccine preventable diseases.
Vaccines for Preteens and Teens
Some of the vaccines that babies get can wear off as kids get older. And as kids grow up they may come in contact with different diseases than when they were babies. Teens and preteens should receive the following vaccines:
- Td/Tdap – This vaccine protects against tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (whooping cough). All preteens should get one Tdap shot when they are 11 or 12 years old.
- Meningococcal – Anyone can get meningococcal disease, but teens and young adults 16 through 23 years old are at increased risk for meningococcal disease. Meningococcal bacteria can cause severe disease, including meningitis and sepsis, resulting in permanent disabilities and even death. All 11 to 12 year olds should be vaccinated. A booster dose is recommended at age 16 years.
- HPV– HPV vaccine prevents infection with the most harmful kinds of human papillomavirus (also called HPV). HPV vaccine is safe, effective, and can protect people from most of the cancers caused by HPV and genital warts. All kids who are 11 or 12 years old should get the three-dose series of HPV vaccine.
- Flu– A flu vaccine is recommended every year to protect against seasonal flu.
Vaccines for Adults
Adults often need a booster immunization, such as Tdap. Depending on your age and health, you may also need one of the vaccines designed specifically for adults, such as shingles or pneumococcal vaccines.
All adults should get the following two vaccines:
- Flu – A flu vaccine should be given every year to protect against seasonal flu.
- Td/Tdap – This vaccine protects against tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (whooping cough). A vaccine is needed every ten years.
Based on your age, health conditions, vaccines you received as a child, and other factors, you may need additional vaccines such as:
- Hepatitis A
- Hepatitis B
- Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR)
Discuss Vaccines at Your Next Checkup
The next time you are scheduled for a visit with your primary care provider, ask if all of your vaccines are up-to-date. To schedule a checkup or visit with one of our primary care providers, contact the Lebauer Healthcare location near you.