Time to prepare your family for flu

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(Photo: MGN Online)

DENVER — Experts say the flu season could hit early this year so it’s time to prepare your family.

The Centers for Disease Control is recommending that everyone over the age of 6 months get a flu vaccine for the start of the season in October.

Nearly 50,000 people die from flu complications each year.  Health experts say children can be especially susceptible because of their lack of exposure to viruses.

“Children haven’t been around long enough to be exposed to several flu seasons so they need vaccinations to boost their immune season,” said Roberta Smith, President of the Children’s Immunization Coalition.

This is also the time of year that children tend to get sick more often from increased exposure to other children and adults at school.

“Kids are together all the time and when you’re in an enclosed area, especially with respiratory viruses, it’s easier for those viruses to be spread,” Smith said.

A new vaccine available this year provides protection from two A and two B strains of influenza.  It will be available in the flu mist spray form.

Experts say the vaccine may run out before the season is over depending on demand. They advise the public to get the original vaccine that protects patients from three strains if that happens.

Smith says although the new vaccine is very effective, “the CDC is not recommending one over the other”.

Experts also recommend the elderly, those in the health care industry and pregnant women get their flu shots.

For more information you can visit  the Children’s Hospital Colorado.

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