Nov 192013

FCS participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting (#MC) for MedImmune Specialty Care. I received a promotional item as a thank you for participating.

It’s flu season – there’s no two ways about it – it arrives every year.  Its hit us here in NH already.  Flu shots are being given, and regardless of how I feel about some vaccines, this is one vaccine our family won’t go without.

That said, we prefer the nasal spray vaccine when possible, as it does NOT contain mercury.  However, there is no way that I would get my developmentally disabled son to follow directions in sniffing the spray in, so he gets the shot.  And he is the biggest reason why we all get vaccinated and take extra precautions to avoid transmitting any viruses.  We cough in our sleeves.  We use hand sanitizers when we’re out.  We wash our hands constantly.  We sneeze in our sleeves if we can’t get to a tissue fast enough.  And if you’re sick – please stay away from us.

You see – one flu virus or one bout of bronchitis or pneumonia – could end his life.  In fact, two years ago – a post-viral pneumonia nearly took his life.  He was intubated for eight long days.  Although we do what we can by preventing the flu following many of the tips on this infographic – that’s not always enough protection, but at least I know we’ve done what we could.

Knowing what I do know about some vaccines – I still see the need for getting the flu shot ever since the flu shot was released when my son was small – he was roughly 4 years old.  You see, when my son had his brain surgeries he was only 3 weeks and 7 weeks of age.  He spent a lot of time in the ICU unit at the Boston Children’s Hospital where I spent my days and nights with him – not knowing if he was going to live or die.

During that time I watched infants and toddlers struggling for their lives from respiratory infections…many did not survive.  I’ll never forget the beautiful 3yo boy who came in with pneumonia.  He was put in the crib next to my son.  Watching him struggle for his life was more than I could handle at the time.  He passed on a few days later.

Then the next few years of my son’s life he was hospitalized for the flu, usually because he was severely dehydrated, or for bronchitis, and pneumonia more times than I can count.  Then the flu shot was released.  My son was given this shot and you know what happened?  Hospitalizations for respiratory infections began to be few and far between.

I’m dead serious – the hospitalizations dropped drastically.  And this is why he still gets them today – 25 years later.  For me – not only do I have to worry about spreading an infection to him – I am his primary caretaker.  I can’t afford to be ill for any length of time…and I can honestly say that the flu shots definitely shorten the length I have the flu when I do get it.  The rest of our family – they get the vaccine too, simply because they are around him so much.

There is an eBooklet I’d like to share with you written by Elizabeth Pantley.  It’s a very informative booklet that I think you’ll find worth reading even if you think you know all there is to know about the flu.  For instance, the flu vs. a cold, how to help prevent the flu, statistics on the cost of downtime of parents being away from their jobs, kids being out of school, information on the vaccine, and so much more.  Download – A Parent’s Guide to Flu Season.

Take five minutes to educate yourself on how to protect your family from the flu – even if you already think you already know, it’s always good to refresh your knowledge.

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