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How to Protect Your Child From the Flu This Year

What's new with the flu?

All children 6 months to 18 years are now recommended to receive the flu vaccine.  This is a change from last year’s recommendation of 6 to 5 years.

Who should be vaccinated?

All healthy children 6 months to 18 years

Any close contacts of your child: parents, siblings, grandparents, nannies and babysitters.  Vaccinating close contacts is especially important is there is an infant in the house that’s under the age of 6 months b/c they are too young to receive flu vaccine and therefore are only protected if you are.

Especially vaccinate all children with chronic medical problems such as asthma, diabetes, heart problems.

Why should I vaccinate my healthy child against the flu?

School-age (or daycare-age) children are at much higher risk for contracting the flu and for getting complications that could end up causing hospitalization such as pneumonia.

It is hard to protect the severity y of the upcoming flu season – and if we’re in for a particularly bad flu season, it’s safer to have your child vaccinated.

What are the symptoms of the flu?

Influenza virus causes high fevers, fevers up to 103 degrees for an average of 3-5 days.

Runny nose and eyes, sore throat, cough, body aches

It is not the “stomach flu” with vomiting and diarrhea, although this is caused by a variety of GI Viruses.

What if my child is really afraid of needles/shots?

At Jacksonville Kids Pediatrics, we provide a numbing spray that can decrease the pain associated with the shot

Ask if your child is a candidate for the Flu Mist spray form of the vaccine – this is a live vaccine that is "sniffed up" by your child and saves them from getting a shot - it is now approved for healthy children 2 years and up.