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Flu shot for kids: Experts explains why it’s important during the pandemic


While corona vaccine trials are still ongoing for children, protecting their health is a parent’s top priority during these difficult times.

The flu vaccine is important for children, as the flu and the COVID-19 virus cause common symptoms, such as fever, cold, and cough. Doctors recommend that flu vaccination can reduce symptoms that can be mistaken for those caused by COVID-19, and preventing children from getting the flu and reducing the severity of flu illness could also lessen stress for children. fathers. Protecting children against infection is essential in the developmental years, as it can affect their growth and development.

The best way to prevent flu among children is with a flu shot, it is effective especially at the change of season and is absolutely a must as the monsoons approach. Based on the WHO, CDC, AAP, and IAP recommendations, any child older than 6 months is eligible for the flu shot and should receive 2 doses one month apart for the first time. The doctor recommends that 4 weeks be held between the two vaccines so that the child has enough time for antibodies to develop and to develop immunity against various types of viral infections.

Afterwards, the flu vaccine (single shot) can be given every year. Some parents worry about the side effects of the flu shot, which are minimal. A child may experience a mild symptom of fever or mild pain at the injection site, preferably on the lateral side of the arm, which will disappear in a day or two.

Influenza vaccines are updated each season based on observed variations in the virus (antigen drift and antigen shift). Flu shots are available to all age groups over 6 years old, whether they are preschoolers, school children, teens, adults, pregnant women, nursing mothers, geriatric age groups.

The flu vaccine does not protect against COVID-19 infections. It can reduce the risk of getting a flu infection and prevent children from being hospitalized. Any child with any type of allergy can get a flu shot.

Some Common Side Effects of Flu Vaccines

Parents should know that the side effects of the flu vaccine are mild and that the side effects are the same in adults, children, and babies.

Fever after the flu shot.

Parents should monitor their child for a fever of 101 ° F (38 ° C) or lower, as this is a common side effect of the flu shot and clears up in a day or two.

Flu injection site reaction

The most common side effect of the flu vaccine is a reaction at the injection site. After the injection, parents should check children for pain, redness, warmth, and in some cases little swelling at the injection site. Side effects usually go away in less than two days.

By Dr. Prashanth Gowda, Consultant Neonatologist and Pediatrician, Maternity Hospitals, Sarjapur, Bangalore

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