As you age, your immune system begins to weaken

For seniors, the flu can be extremely serious, and often fatal. According to, 90 percent of flu-related deaths and more than half of flu-related hospitalizations occur in people age 65 and older.

As elders are more susceptible to the flu, the flu vaccine is vital for their health. Flu vaccines are designed to protect against three flu viruses that experts predict will be the most common during the upcoming season. The vaccines are administrated via shot or nasal spray.

The 2012-2013 flu vaccine is made from the following three viruses:

  • A/California/7/2009 (H1N1)-like virus
  • A/Victoria/361/2011 (H3N2)-like virus
  • B/Wisconsin/1/2010-like virus

Knowing the symptoms of the flu is another step in preventing flu-related deaths and hospitalization.

Flu symptoms include:

  • A 100oF or higher fever or feeling feverish (not everyone with the flu has a fever)
  • A cough and/or sore throat
  • A runny or stuffy nose
  • Headaches and/or body aches
  • Chills
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea, vomiting, and/or diarrhea

If you experience any of these symptoms, call your physician immediately. For more information on where to get your flu vaccine, click here.