Vaccinations (immunizations) help protect your child from certain diseases. They also help reduce the spread of disease to others. Sometimes a vaccine doesn't completely prevent the disease. But it will make the disease much less serious if your child does get it.
Some vaccines are given only one time. Others are given in several doses over time. Most are given as shots.
Follow-up care is a key part of your child's treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if your child is having problems. It's also a good idea to know your child's test results and keep a list of the medicines your child takes.
Most children get shots at birth and then get more shots over the next 18 months. Booster shots occur throughout life. These are later doses of any vaccines that need to be repeated. Fewer vaccinations are needed after age 6. But older children and teens need shots too.
Standard vaccines for children include:
Standard vaccines for pre-teens include:
Vaccinations help protect your child from disease. They also help reduce the spread of disease to others. Vaccines have greatly reduced the number of epidemics that happen.
Side effects are mostly minor, if they happen at all. They may include:
Severe reactions to vaccinations, such as a very high fever or trouble breathing, are rare. The risk of a serious complication from a disease is much greater than the risk of having a severe reaction to a vaccine. Vaccines don't cause multiple sclerosis, autism, or sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).
It is very important to keep accurate records of your child's shots, including any reactions to the vaccines. You may need to show proof of vaccinations when you enroll your child in daycare or school.
Call 911 anytime you think your child may need emergency care. For example, call if:
Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your child's health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if:
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Current as of:
February 9, 2016
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
& Brian D. O'Brien, MD - Internal Medicine
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