Influenza Immunization – Flu Vaccine
Influenza, more commonly a cold is a viral infection that continuously spreads from one carrier to host through air when when sneezing and coughing. It develops mainly in the lungs and brings high fever, a lot of discomfort and several body aches, much more than other respiratory infections.
Influenza viruses are divided into three categories: A, B and C. First two of them are source of epidemics of respiratory illness that visit us every winter. The influenza C bring a very mild respiratory illness or none of them. It is also not an epidemic type. While A & B are dangerous to public health the influenza C is described as one that is completely harmless.
The influenza virus can cause serious respiratory infections and is extremely infectious. On top of that, bacterial infections occur the same time as the flu. Viral and bacterial infections can simply overwhelm the function of the lungs and in such a case can end up in death of patient. The biggest mortality percentage occurs in older people and babies because of the week immune system they have.
To prevent the flu, typical vaccinations can be done. They are available in two forms – an injection with a dead virus and a nasal spray containing a live but very weak virus. The mutations of the virus occur from year to year and make the vaccine used in previous years less or not effective at all. Because of that it is highly recommended to get a flu vaccination done each year as it makes immune system prepared for what is coming.
A lot of studies have shown that when it comes to children the nasal spray is much more effective in comparison with vaccination, but if you are an adult it is much better to get an flu preventing injection.
Flu vaccine can be taken by anyone, who wants to be prepared for the new mutation. In the same time there are some guidelines that are to be kept especially with children aged between six months and nineteen years, pregnant women, people over fifty and people with specific medical conditions. The age factor loose it is importance in a places and situations of high risk. People who live in nursing homes and other long-term stay facilities and high infection risk workers should be more cautious and take anti-flu vaccination.
People who have an allergy for poultry eggs should avoid the flu vaccine. The same rule applies to babies under six months and those with hypersensitivity to the vaccine. Also if you have been ill recently you may pass on it as your immune system can be weak.
The effectiveness of the vaccination highly depends on the dose of viruses used to prepare it in comparison to the ones that are actually “in the air”. Another factors are age and health status. They should be considered before deciding on which vaccination to take or to take it at all.