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This past holiday season, America’s senior citizens were surrounded by people sneezing, coughing and spreading germs. It happens at the mall, the holiday concert or the family dinner, and those germs could potentially be fatal. That’s why Senior Helpers, one of the leading providers of in-home care for seniors, is advising families to get their elderly loved ones a flu vaccine before the flu season arrives in full force.
“Senior citizens have the highest risk of potentially fatal complications from the flu and almost two-thirds of seniors who get the flu end up in the hospital,” said Seth Zamek with Senior Helpers in Indian Land. “That’s why making sure an elderly loved one gets a flu shot is the best holiday gift because it’s one of the most effective ways to protect a loved one.”
Seniors are more likely to get the flu because the body’s immune system weakens as it gets older. But the Centers for Disease Control advise flu shots not only guard against the flu, but also offer protection from flu-related complications, such as pneumonia. The CDC considers flu season to run from November through April with its peak in February. And while flu shots are available well into flu season, it’s best to get vaccinated earlier rather than later so the body can build up immunity to the virus.
Consider these facts from the CDC:
u About 32,000 seniors aged 65 and older died from the flu and flu-related illnesses last year.
u About 180,000 seniors were hospitalized from the flu last year.
u Flu shots reduce hospitalizations by 70 percent, deaths by 85 percent, and the chance of catching the flu by 80 percent.
u People age 50 or older, and with certain chronic medical conditions, should get a flu shot.
“This is something family members shouldn’t wait on,” Zamek said. “A flu shot helps provide peace of mind to enjoy the holidays and start the New Year healthy. Senior Helpers follows the CDC’s guidelines when it comes to flu shots.”
About Senior Helpers
Senior Helpers provides professional caregivers for seniors who wish to live at home rather than in a nursing facility. Senior Helpers of South Carolina can be reached at (803) 548-6766 or www.seniorhelpers.com.
The company offers a wide range of personal and companion care services to assist seniors living independently with a strong focus on quality of life for the senior and peace of mind for their family.
Senior Helpers of South Carolina can be reached at (803) 548-6766 or visit www.seniorhelpers.com.