Vaccinate

Vaccines can help save our lives and prevent the spread of infectious diseases. An added benefit? They can help reduce your risk of developing frailty.

Vaccines and Frailty: What do We Know?

As we age, our body’s ability to bounce back from health stressors is reduced. Once minor health conditions, such as a fall, can become the first step in a downward health spiral leading to frailty. Why does this matter? Infectious diseases are more likely to cause negative health outcomes in older adults living with frailty.

Negative health outcomes include:

  • Hospitalization
  • Prolonged bed rest
  • Cardiovascular events
  • Death

Vaccines can help us avoid contracting diseases such as the flu, shingles, pneumonia, and more. Vaccines are scientifically proven to reduce the risk of contracting certain diseases.

Today in Canada, less than 5% of people die from infectious diseases thanks to the invention of vaccines. A hundred years ago, infectious diseases were the leading cause of death worldwide—look how far we’ve come!

By age 50, Canadian adults should see their healthcare provider and ask about adult vaccines that will protect them from infections and diseases that, when they were younger, they might have fought off easily.

Important vaccines for healthy adults aged 60 years and older:

  • Influenza Vaccine* (annually)
  • Shingles Vaccine (one-time vaccine)
  • Pneumococcal Vaccine (one-time vaccine)

*After age 65, it is recommended that people get the high dose flu vaccine, which has been proven more effective in protecting older adults.

Ask your doctor about booster shots for:

  • Tetanus (booster every 10 years)
  • Diphtheria (booster every 10 years)
  • Pertussis (whooping cough) (one booster as an adult)

Some adults have missed childhood vaccinations, and getting a vaccine can protect you, as well as other people around you. Older Canadians should ask their health provider if they require any of these additional shots to update their immunization record.

Government of Canada. (29 March 2019). Vaccination for adults. [Website]. Retrieved from https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/vaccination-adults.html#a3

Public Health Agency of Canada. (16 August 2019). Seasonal influenza vaccine pocket guide 2019/20 edition: Recommendations from the National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) 2019–2020. [Website]. Retrieved from https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/publications/diseases-conditions/seasonal-influenza-vaccine-pocket-guide.html

These are general health guidelines and should not be considered personal medical advice. You should consult your health care provider and discuss each element outlined above to ensure that each element of the AVOID Frailty campaign is personally customized for you.