Should seniors delay getting the flu shot?

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ATLANTA — It seems that experts aren’t sure it’s a good idea to get a flu shot early, especially if you’re older.

Flu season generally peaks in mid-winter, but you’ve probably already noticed flu-shot offers at pharmacies and maybe where you work.

But some experts say it might be a good idea to wait a little while to get that jab, especially if you’re older, because doctors aren’t sure how long a flu shot will protect you.

It seems the science is mixed when it comes to the length of time a shot provides protection from the influenza virus.

While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says everyone six months and older should get a flu shot by the end of October, some immunology experts believe it’s better for people older than 65 to wait.

They say elderly immune systems have a tougher time responding and the vaccine wears off faster for that age group.

The board that advises the CDC on immunizations says that antibodies created by vaccines decline as time goes by — and seniors are the ones primarily affected.

The board suggests delayed vaccinations may give people greater immunity to the virus later in the flu season.

Either way, federal health officials say an early flu shot is better than no flu shot — so get the jab whenever you can.