If you’ve been wondering when to get your flu shot, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends the sooner the better. Even though the weather is still warm and you’re probably not thinking about the flu yet, experts at both the CDC and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend that adults and children over six months old should get the new 2018-2019 vaccine by the end of October.

You don’t need to wait until the flu season strikes in full force to get a vaccination. Scratch that, you shouldn’t wait. While getting vaccinated later on still provides protection against the flu, the earlier you can protect yourself, the better.

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According to the CDC’s website, this year’s vaccine is updated to better match the 2018-2019 projected viral strains. Unlike last year, this year the nasal spray is back. So if your little one aged two and up will do just about anything to avoid a needle, you’re in luck.

The CDC isn’t the only organization advocating for an early fall flu vaccination. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recently issued a statement recommending the immunization for everyone six months and up as soon as the vaccine is available.

So go ahead and call the pediatrician now to set up your kiddo’s vaccination appointment—before your child’s preschool pals, grade school buds and neighborhood friends start passing the virus around.

—Erica Loop

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