Childhood Immunizations

August 23, 2009 by  
Filed under Education

This information is on immunizations for children. You’ll learn what kind of immunizations your child should have, when they should be given, and why it’s so important to keep them up-to-date.

Immunizations are given to children to protect them from serious diseases. Many diseases that used to cripple or kill children are now rare — largely because of these immunizations.

Your child should receive immunizations against the following diseases:

  • Diphtheria
  • Tetanus
  • Whooping cough (also called Pertussis)
  • Polio
  • Measles
  • Mumps
  • Rubella (which is also called German measles)
  • Hemophilus type b or H-I-B (the leading cause of meningitis in children under six)
  • Chicken pox
  • Hepatitis B.

Different immunizations must be given at different times. Some immunizations are given in a series and require periodic boosters; others are given only once. For this reason, your child’s health care provider will give you an immunization schedule. If you miss an immunization, call right away to reschedule.

You will want to keep a record of your child’s immunizations and their dates for school, travel and medical purposes. Also, bring it with you to every well child visit.

Here is what to expect when your child receives immunizations or shots. After a Hepatitis B or DPT shot, your child may be a little irritable, have a low-grade temperature, and have redness and swelling around the injection site for 48 hours. To take care of these minor reactions, give acetaminophen pain reliever drops as directed on the label. If the temperature goes over 101 degrees rectally for longer than 24 hours, call your child’s health care provider.

24 to 48 hours after the mumps, measles and rubella immunization, and after the chicken pox vaccine, occasional side effects include slight pain, redness and swelling at the injection site. Low-grade fever and a mild rash also may occur about a week to ten days later.

In extremely rare cases, children may have more serious side effects. Your doctor can discuss this with you. Remember, serious reactions are extremely rare indeed, but the benefits of immunization are very immediate and powerful. Childhood immunizations have saved countless lives, and spared countless children from serious, permanent, physical and mental damage.

Unfortunately, in recent years, some parents have neglected their children’s immunizations. As a result, we are starting to see increases in diphtheria, whooping cough, mumps, measles and German measles. These diseases are returning to cripple and even kill children and adults. We can prevent this completely through immunizations.

Remember these key points:

  • Make sure that your child receives all appropriate immunizations. Immunizations may cause a few mild side effects, but serious effects are extremely rare.
  • Failure to follow through on immunizations can cause serious harm to your child.
Tags: vaccinations, Immunizations, injection, acetaminophen, Childhood Immunizations

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