Nasal spray is back for kids this flu season

A pediatrician sits with a young patient

What Parents Should Know About the Nasal Spray Flu Vaccine

However, the nasal spray vaccine can be used for children 2 years of age or older who would not otherwise receive the flu shot.

An AZ spokeswoman said the company believes its vaccine "continues to provide an important option for flu vaccination in the USA and we respect the role of the CDC, ACIP and AAP in protecting and advancing public health".

While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention marks off October through May as the typical flu season, the virus can be contracted year-round.

Stanton says doctors are hopeful that this early surge will slow down ahead of traditional flu season between December and March, but it is important to get vaccinated sooner rather than later. While health officials warned that last year's flu vaccine wasn't as effective as previous years, they recommended that any protection was better than none.

The CDC urges nearly everyone 6 months and older to get vaccinated each year.

AstraZeneca, which makes the nasal spray, says in an emailed statement that it "believes that FluMist Quadrivalent continues to provide an important option for flu vaccination in the USA and we respect the role of the CDC, ACIP, and AAP in protecting and advancing public health". The vaccine not only reduces a child's risk of developing severe symptoms but reduces the amount of complication such as pneumonia and death.

Among those who died were two children. (The American Academy of Pediatrics recently made a similar recommendation.) While the shot is still effective for those who get it later in the fall or winter, getting vaccinated before flu season is in full swing offers the best protection, the CDC says.

"Get your vaccine. Wash your hands well". For those who decide to get the shot, there are two options. The first is a trivalent vaccine, protect against two influenzas A strain, H1N1 and H3N2, and one influenza B strain. Still, AAP says the effectiveness of the latest version remains an unknown against the strain. The spray is not recommended for children who have asthma or are immunocompromised. People with a history of egg allergy of any severity should receive any licensed, recommended, and age-appropriate influenza vaccine.

Fortunately, doctors have debunked this myth, meaning no, you can't get sick from the vaccine.

The importance of vaccines is underscored by a recent measles outbreak that has affected more than 100 people in 21 states; measles is easily prevented with a vaccine the CDC recommends for all children.

Caughman Taylor, senior medical director at Palmetto Health Children's Hospital and chairman of the Pediatrics Department, said complications from the flu can be more severe than only missing five to seven days of school or work. You can also visit the CDC website to find the nearest location available.

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