Adults should receive a tetanus booster, usually Td, every ten years for as long as they live. In addition, if they have a particularly dirty wound and their last tetanus booster was more than five years ago, they should receive a tetanus booster while the wound is being treated.
The Tdap vaccine should be substituted for the Td vaccine once in an adolescent’s or adult’s life. Healthcare workers and parents of newborn children are encouraged to receive a Tdap vaccine as soon as possible, even if they recently had a tetanus booster. This vaccine will decrease the risk of spreading pertussis to patients or newborns.
Adults who have never received the original series of three tetanus-containing vaccines should receive a series of three vaccines, each spaced a month apart. This series would include one Tdap and two Td vaccines.