4 Shots You Need if You’re 65+

As you get older, your immune system weakens, and it can be more difficult to fight infections. This means you’re more likely to get the flu, pneumonia and shingles or to develop complications that can lead to long-term illness, hospitalization, and even death. If you have chronic conditions such as diabetes, kidney disease, or heart disease your risks are greater. Prevention is as easy as 1,2,3,4–four shots you need if you’re 65+.

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDD) the flu and pneumonia combined rank seventh on the list of leading causes of death among people 65 and older. Keep your shots current. Vaccinations don’t always prevent a disease, but if you catch something you have had a shot for, you may not get as sick.

Here are the 4 shots you need (according to the CDC) if you’re 65 and older.

  • Flu—every year
  • Tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis (Tdap)—1 dose Tdap and then a Td booster every 10 years
  • Shingles—1-2 doses depending on the vaccine
  • Pneumococcal—one dose

The vaccines you need depend on your age, lifestyle, job, overall health, pregnancy status, and travel plans. It also depends on who you are in close contact with and what vaccines you had as a child. Aside from the above recommended vaccines you may also need hepatitis, meningococcal, measles, mumps, rubella, chickenpox, HPV (human papillomavirus).

Talk to your primary care physician about which vaccines are right for you.