The United States observes a rigorous vaccination schedule designed to keep infants and children protected against preventable diseases. As an adult, you may not realize that there are vaccinations that may be beneficial for keeping you and your loved ones safe from illness and disease as well. The CDC publishes Immunization Schedules for adults as well as for children. The vaccinations recommended on these schedules vary according to an individual’s age, health, previous vaccinations, and risk factors. Here are nine vaccines that the CDC suggests may be beneficial for adults.
The CDC recommends a yearly influenza vaccine for anyone over six months old. The flu vaccine is critical in preventing the misery, lost work time, and risk of serious illness from flu. The CDC reports that the 2017-2018 flu season caused illness in 48.8 million Americans. Furthermore, around 79,000 people died from the flu. Each year, scientists design a flu vaccination that targets the most prevalent, active viruses of the year. For the 2019-2020 flu season, the World Health Organization recommends an egg-based quadrivalent vaccine that targets an H1N1-like virus, an H3N2-like virus, a B/Colorado/06/2017-like virus, and a B/Phuket/3073/2013-like virus.
For adults, the CDC recommends a tetanus vaccine every ten years. The original vaccine is given once as a Tdap vaccination that offers protection against tetanus, diptheria, and pertussis. After the initial dose, a tetanus and diphtheria booster, Td, can be given every ten years. Failure to keep up with tetanus vaccinations can result in a painful condition called lockjaw. Lockjaw occurs when a bacterium, Clostridium tetani, infects the body and releases toxins that cause muscles to painfully contract. The term lockjaw comes from an affected person’s difficulty in opening the mouth.