"In the past 5 years, we've seen outbreaks of pertussis (whooping cough)," Dr. Rieger says. That means it's more important than ever to get this vaccine that protects against tetanus, diphtheria, and whooping cough.
Who should get it: All adults.
When to have it: If you didn't get the tetanus vaccine as a child, you'll need three doses: one ASAP, the next 4 weeks later, and the third 6 to 12 months down the road. Pro tip: In the past, tetanus was offered as a standalone shot, so your vaccine may not have protected against diphtheria and pertussis. If you got an older version of the vaccine (check with your doctor to be sure), get the combo Tdap shot to protect against diphtheria and whooping cough, and then get the tetanus-only booster every 10 years.