Although the flu shot is not a guarantee that your aging relative will not get the flu, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says it is the best defense. In fact, according to an article posted on WebMD, this year’s version of the vaccination is performing even better than in previous years.
Current Flu Shot Works Better Than Last Year’s
Flu season is still in full swing across the United States. 24 states are still experiencing the flu at high levels. The good news is that this year’s flu shot is performing at 47 percent effectiveness in comparison to last flu season’s vaccination, which performed only at around 25 percent.
If your older family member hasn’t gotten their flu shot yet this season, they could still reduce their risk of contracting the flu or getting a serious case of it by half. The current flu season is expected to continue nearly to the end of March. Even if your aging relative gets the flu after being vaccinated, they aren’t likely to get as severe a case as they would without the shot. That could prevent life-threatening complications like pneumonia.
More Ways to Prevent the Flu
In addition to getting a flu vaccination, older adults can further reduce their risk of getting the flu simply by following these flu prevention tips:
Thoroughly Washing Hands: Use soap and water to wash hands. Be sure the senior washes all parts of their hands, front, back, and between fingers. Hands should also be rinsed completely, then patted dry. If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer.
Stay Away from Sick People: If someone is coughing or showing other signs of illness, keep your aging relative away from them. Ask friends and relatives not to visit if they are ill or think they may be coming down with something. The flu virus can be spread just by breathing.
Disinfect Surfaces: Studies have shown that the flu virus can spread through touching contaminated surfaces. In one study, researchers discovered that a single doorknob can spread the flu virus to between 40 and 60 percent of visitors in just 2 to 4 hours. To prevent the spread of germs, wipe down frequently touched surfaces with a disinfecting cleaner frequently.
Senior care can help your older family member to avoid getting the flu. Senior care providers can remind them to wash their hands before eating, after sneezing, and after using the bathroom. They can also steer the senior away from people who are coughing or sneezing in public. Senior care providers can also help to keep the house clean, wiping down counters, doorknobs, and other surfaces.
Are you or a loved one considering hiring Home Care in Orem, UT? Please talk to the friendly staff at December Rose Senior Care at Home. Providing Home Care in Highland, Utah and Surrounding Communities. 801-427-ROSE (7673)
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