Monday, August 26, 2013

Should You Get The Pneumonia Shot?

National Immunization Awareness Month Pneumonia is an infection of the lungs. It's a very serious illness, that often spreads from person to person. Pneumonia can lead to infections of the blood or the brain, and in some cases results in death (especially in older adults). The good news is that you can prevent some types of pneumonia by getting a pneumonia shot.

The US Department of Health and Human Services recommends if you are age 65 or older, you should get a pneumonia shot. If you are under age 65, you may need a pneumonia shot if you smoke or have a health condition like:
  • A weakened immune system (from HIV, for example) 
  • Diabetes 
  • Heart disease 
  • Asthma
There are not many reported side effects. Some people develop redness or pain where the shot is given.

In addition to getting the vaccine, the CDC has a couple tips to help reduce your risk of catching pneumonia:
  1. Wash your hands regularly
  2. Clean hard surfaces that are touched often (like doorknobs and countertops)
  3. Cough/Sneeze into a tissue or into your elbow or sleeve
  4. Limit exposure to cigarette smoke
  5. Prevent and treat health conditions like diabetes and HIV/AIDS


Source: HealthFinder.gov

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