Help Protect Yourself and your Family this Holiday Season

The holiday season is here. That means more time to spend with your family and friends. However, it

also can mean the spread of flu and its potentially serious outcomes, especially among certain higher

risk groups, such as pregnant people and children. Getting a flu vaccine is the best way to reduce your

risk from flu. Here are five things you should know about flu vaccination.

Flu shots benefit you, your family and your community

The most important action to protect yourself against flu is getting a flu vaccine each year. CDC

recommends everyone 6 months and older get a flu vaccine to reduce your risk of getting flu and lessen

its symptoms if you do get sick.

Getting vaccinated against flu can also help protect loved ones, like adults 65 years and older and people

living with chronic conditions, both groups of people who are at higher risk of having serious flu

complications. Bottom line? Getting an annual flu vaccine is important to protect yourself, your loved

ones, and your community against flu.

Flu shots benefit pregnant people and babies

Flu can be especially serious for pregnant people because of changes in the immune system, heart, and

lungs during pregnancy that can make them more vulnerable to flu and its potentially severe

complications. The good news? Getting a flu vaccine can reduce your risk of getting flu and lessen flu

symptoms if you do get sick both during and after pregnancy. A flu shot during pregnancy also can help

protect your baby from flu for several months after birth, when they’re too young to be vaccinated


Flu vaccines have safely protected millions of pregnant people and their babies from flu for decades.

One study showed fewer cases of infants with flu in mothers who got a flu vaccine compared to mothers

who were not vaccinated. This is because, when vaccinated while pregnant, you pass antibodies on to

your developing baby.

Flu shots benefit young children

Did you know flu can be more serious for children than a cold? That’s why it’s also important to get your

children vaccinated against flu this year. Children younger than 5 years old – especially those younger

than 2 – and children of any age with certain chronic health conditions, like asthma and diabetes, are at

a higher risk of developing potentially serious flu complications. Because these groups of children are at

higher risk, it is especially important they get a flu vaccine to reduce their risk of getting sick or being

hospitalized or dying from flu if they do get sick.

Flu vaccines are safe and effective – and there’s still time to get vaccinated.

Every year, experts update flu vaccines as needed to best protect against the viruses expected to spread

during the upcoming season. During seasons when the vaccine viruses are well-matched to the viruses

that are spreading, flu vaccine has been shown to reduce the risk of flu illness by 40 to 60 percent. And if

someone who is vaccinated gets sick, vaccination has been shown to reduce severity of illness, reducing

the risk of serious flu outcomes.

The best time to get vaccinated is before flu has begun spreading widely in your community but

vaccination can still be protective later. Flu most commonly peaks in February, and significant flu activity

can continue into May.

You have options on which flu vaccine to get and where to get it, including at a health care provider’s

office, at work, a pharmacy, some stores, or even supermarkets. Speak with a health care provider today

about getting a flu vaccine to protect yourself and your loved ones.

Learn more about the benefits of getting vaccinated against flu at