With a nationwide slip in immunizations, routine childhood vaccinations keep kids safe in schools
Childhood vaccinations save approximately 4 million deaths each year worldwide. It’s no surprise, then, that history books commonly label immunizations as one of the greatest success stories of modern medicine.
Vaccines work as invisible shields inside your child’s body. When your child is exposed to a disease in vaccine form at a very early age, their immune systems begin producing much-needed antibodies that protect them from becoming sick when first exposed to that disease, whether it’s influenza, chickenpox, hepatitis or tetanus.
Vaccines start very early – at two months old. The reason we start so early is because a baby can get very sick from diseases and they need that protection right away. Thanks to vaccines, babies now live much longer and healthier lives. Vaccines, in fact, are the main reason why so many babies survive into adulthood.
With area schools opening this month, a lot of kiddos need updates to their vaccinations to stay safe and healthy inside the classroom. In fact, most parents associate vaccine booster shots with their kindergarten-aged children. At that age they require polio, measles, influenza, diphtheria and chickenpox shots, among others. Most clinics combine these various vaccines into just two shots so there’s less stress on the child and parents. Booster shots are also needed for older students entering junior high and senior high school.
Sadly, we are seeing a decrease in immunization rates nationwide. With that, some diseases are making a comeback, such as mumps and measles. We don’t want these diseases showing up in our clinics or our communities. The best way we protect against that happening is to keep immunization rates high.
To ensure your child’s germ-fighting defenses remain strong, maintaining yearly wellness health appointments, usually at the time of your child’s birthday, is paramount. This not only keeps your child safe from diseases, but it prevents a potential disease outbreak or public health emergency from happening.
Remember, vaccines can prevent common diseases that at one time seriously harmed or even killed infants, children and adults. Without vaccines, your child is at risk of becoming seriously ill or even dying from childhood diseases such as measles and whooping cough. Routine immunizations can prevent that.