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Important Immunizations After 65

By Dian Brannen, 9:00 am on

The immune system of adults continues to weaken as they age, which makes seniors more susceptible to illness. Many life-threatening diseases in older adults are preventable simply by staying current on their immunizations. Below, Lehigh Valley elderly home care professionals list a few common vaccines recommended for most seniors.

1. Influenza Vaccine

The flu vaccine is an annual immunization that is highly recommended for seniors. The flu is a serious condition that can result in hospitalization and even death. Individuals who have diabetes or heart disease are at an even higher risk. The higher-dose flu shot is generally used for people 65 and older to help elevate their immune response.

2. Zoster Vaccine

The varicella-zoster virus is the cause of shingles in adults. It is directly linked to the chicken pox virus, which can lie dormant within the nervous system for many years. The zoster vaccine helps prevent shingles and minimizes the severity if an outbreak occurs.

3. Pneumococcal Vaccine

Seniors are at a high-risk of developing pneumonia and should receive a pneumococcal vaccine. This vaccine currently helps prevent twenty-three different strains of bacterial pneumonia. When pneumonia is connected to influenza, it is one of the leading causes of death amongst the elderly. Pneumonia is a condition that causes inflammation to one or both lungs but can also create other problems such as low blood pressure, bloodstream infections, or kidney failure.

4. Tetanus-Diphtheria Vaccine

A senior citizen that is 65 years of age or older needs to receive a tetanus-diphtheria vaccine from a physician. This vaccination protects older adults from both of the bacterial diseases, tetanus and diphtheria. Diphtheria is an infection that is extremely contagious and makes breathing difficult. Tetanus invades the body through a cut and affects the nervous system and brain.

Immunizations are one of the best ways to prevent disease and illnesses in senior citizens. A healthcare professional can recommend the right immunization schedule for each senior’s needs.

Ensure your loved one has the support he or she needs to stay healthy with help from Home Care Assistance. We’re a trusted provider of hourly and live-in home care in the Lehigh Valley, offering seniors assistance with everything from running errands and cooking to personal grooming and incontinence. For more information, call a Care Manager at 484-350-3874 and request a free in-home consultation.