Why you need to get your vaccines updated
Immunizations protect us from diseases at every stage of life. Whether you're a child, parent or grandparent, you may be in need of an immunization. For example, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends everyone— starting at age 6 months—get a flu vaccine each year.
Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota (BCBSND) covers immunizations that are recommended by the CDC. You can also download an easy-to-read immunization schedule for birth to age 6 and for age 7 to age 18 from the CDC website.
The CDC recommends that you keep a careful record of your child's vaccines, as well as your own shots and how old you were when you received them.
As an adult, you need vaccines because the vaccines kept you healthy as a kid don't always last your whole life. Be sure to ask your doctor which shots you need for your personal health and long-term well-being. You can start the discussion with this list of adult vaccinations recommended by the CDC for the following common illnesses:
- Chicken pox. If you're not already immune.
- Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis (Tdap). Every 10 years.
- Influenza. Once a year.
- Hepatitis A and/or B. Based on previous health conditions, drug use and sexual history.
- Human Papillomavirus (HPV). Up to age 26 and based on sexual history.
- Measles. Ages 19-55.
- Shingles. 60 and older.
- Pneumococcal (pneumonia). 65 and older.