Sniffle Solutions

How long does the flu shot last? Does a vaccination from last fall protect my kid from viruses this summer?

How long does the flu shot last? Does a vaccination from last fall protect my kid from viruses this ...

A flu vaccine generally lasts for a year or more, but its effectiveness starts to wane at around six months. That’s why they’re given in the fall: Maximum protection stretches through peak flu season, which can start as early as October and stretch into April or even May.

This means your child’s immune system is more vulnerable to the flu during summer -- but that doesn’t mean he or she will catch it. In the United States, flu rates drop sharply during these months, when people spend less time indoors and in close contact with each other.

Still, it’s important to remind your child to keep up the healthy behaviors year-round. These include:

  • Washing hands or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer often.
  • Avoiding sharing cups, utensils or bottles with others.
  • Eating well and getting enough sleep.

Finally, remember that your child -- and the rest of your family -- should get a flu shot every year. The virus is constantly changing, so the vaccine is updated to protect against the most common strains.

Has your child gotten sick in the summer? Did you think it was any worse than a winter bug? Join the conversation.

Photo Credit: @iStockphoto.com/surabky

 

 


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