It’s not too late for a flu shot that can at least ease symptoms

While the flu shot doesn’t cover all strains, it can help lessen the severity of symptoms if you or your child gets the flu. Flu shots are available.

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to affect families across the nation. Flu season is upon us, and pediatricians are reminding families that there is still time to get kids a flu shot. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) strongly recommends children receive their flu vaccinations by the end of October. This includes all eligible kids 6 months and older.

“The flu can be deadly, especially for young children, the elderly and pregnant women,” said Marcella Perez, M.D., pediatrician with Norton Children’s Medical Group – Poplar Level. “It’s something to take very seriously.”

There’s still time to get the flu shot

While the vaccine doesn’t cover all strains, it can help lessen the severity of your symptoms if you or your child gets the flu.

The AAP recommends all children 6 months and older get a flu shot unless there is a medical reason not to. Children between 6 months and 8 years old who have never had a flu shot should get two doses four weeks apart to get the best response. Previously vaccinated children may need only one dose.

Getting the flu shot now may help protect you and your family through the remainder of the flu season, which can linger into early spring.

In addition to the vaccine, there are steps you can take to keep your family healthy during cold and flu season –– many of these steps also can help prevent COVID-19 transmission.

“The key factor to preventing the spread of flu is good hand-washing for everyone in the family, practicing cough and sneeze etiquette, and limiting exposure to others who have the flu,” Dr. Perez said. “And if your child is displaying flu-like symptoms, keep them home from school or day care, where the illness can spread easily.”

Call your pediatrician’s office for a flu shot

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Is your child feeling sick?

Knowing the difference between a cold and the flu and the difference between coronavirus and flu symptoms can help you decide when to visit your pediatrician. Pediatrician offices of Norton Children’s Medical Group, affiliated with the UofL School of Medicine, have procedures in place to help keep children and families healthy and safer.

Signs and symptoms of the flu can include:

  • Fever or feeling feverish/chills
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue (tiredness)
  • Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though it is more common in children than adults


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