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Childhood Immunization

Getting vaccinated is the best way to protect yourself from Illness.
Childhood Immunization

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How does Immunization work?

Immunizations are of varied forms: liquids, pills, shots, or nasal sprays that you take to help your immune system identify and fight off dangerous microbes. Some vaccines contain pathogenic microorganisms. Medicines help in boosting immunity and eliminate germs, making them ineffective enough so that your child won’t become sick.

There are many kinds of vaccines available for every disease. Every vaccine type elicits an immune response that aids the body in warding off pathogens. Immunity is defined as a defense against a specific illness.

Childhood Immunization
Getting vaccinated is the best way to protect yourself from Illness.

Why is it necessary to immunize my child?

Although newborns have immune systems that can combat the majority of germs, some serious diseases cannot be treated on their own. In such situations, there is a need for vaccines to treat them. Vaccines are also used to boost the immune system against these diseases.

Many infants, kids, and adults have suffered because of these diseases. The effects of these diseases are so adverse that some were even killed or severely injured by these diseases. However, thanks to vaccines, your child can now develop immunity to these illnesses without ever getting ill. Additionally, some vaccines may boost your immune system more effectively.

Your child’s vaccinations also safeguard others. In most cases, germs can spread quickly through a community and sicken a large number of people. It can cause an outbreak if enough people get sick. However, if enough people are immunized against a particular disease, it becomes more difficult for that disease to spread to new people. This implies that the disease is less likely to spread throughout the entire community.

For those who cannot receive certain vaccines, community immunity is especially crucial. For instance, they might not be able to receive a vaccination because of their compromised immune systems. Some of the vaccine ingredients may cause allergies in some people. Additionally, some vaccines should not be administered to newborns. Collective immunity helps in keeping them all safe.

Different kinds of vaccination: –

The following are the various vaccination kinds:

  1. Inactivated Vaccine:

To make these vaccines, a pathogen is usually rendered inactive by heat or chemicals like formaldehyde or formalin. This renders the pathogen “intact,” meaning the immune system can still identify it, but it also stops it from replicating.

  1. Attenuated Vaccine:

There are multiple methods for producing attenuated vaccines. Several widely used techniques entail transferring the pathogen via multiple cell cultures or animal embryos, usually chick embryos. The resulting vaccine virus will not be able to replicate to the point where it can infect a human, but it will still elicit an immune response that can defend against infection in the future.

  1. Toxoid Vaccine:

A toxin secreted by certain bacteria causes certain bacterial diseases instead of the bacteria itself. By deactivating the toxin that results in disease symptoms, vaccinations against this kind of pathogen can be created. Similar to bacteria or viruses used in inactivated or killed vaccines, this can be accomplished by applying heat, formalin treatment, or other techniques.

  1. Subunit Vaccine:

Subunit vaccines stimulate the immune system by utilizing only a portion of the target pathogen. One way to achieve this is to separate a particular protein from a pathogen and present it as an independent antigen.

  1. Conjugate Vaccine:

Conjugate vaccines are produced by combining two distinct ingredients, which makes them somewhat similar to recombinant vaccines. On the other hand, components from bacterial coats are used to create conjugate vaccines. These coats and a carrier protein are chemically bound and used together as a vaccine.

  1. Valence Vaccine:

Monovalent vaccines are possible. A monovalent vaccine is intended to provide immunity against a single microbe or antigen. An immunization against two or more strains of the same microorganism, or two or more microorganisms, is the goal of a multivalent or polyvalent vaccine.

  1. Heterotypic Vaccine:

Also referred to as “Jennerian vaccines,” heterologous vaccines contain pathogens from other animals that either do not cause disease in the organism being treated or cause a mild disease.

  1. mRNA Vaccine:

Also known as an RNA vaccine, mRNA vaccines are a new class of vaccine made of RNA nucleic acid enclosed in a vector, like lipid nanoparticles.

When should my child start getting shots?

Most vaccines should be given to your child for the first time during the first two years of life. To receive full protection from the vaccines, they might require multiple doses. For instance, the CDC advises that children receive their first dose of the MMR vaccine no later than 12 months of age. When they are between the ages of 4 and 6 and are about to start elementary school, they should then receive a second dose. Vaccinations for children can be given to your child at regularly scheduled well-baby checkups.

Age-related Vaccines

The infant vaccination program begins at birth. Within the first few months of life, your newborn will receive their first vaccinations. Depending on their age, your child might get a variety of vaccinations. The pediatrician of your child may adhere to different rules. To find out which vaccinations and when they should be given, talk to our pediatrician. 

Why Is Chickenpox Vaccine Recommended?

Once widespread in the US, chickenpox resulted in numerous hospitalizations and occasionally fatalities. The vaccine was introduced in 1995. Ever since the vaccine’s introduction, millions of infections have been avoided. In almost every child who receives a vaccination, it prevents serious illness. Additionally, it works wonders at warding off minor illnesses. When vaccinated children contract chickenpox, their symptoms are typically milder than the ones who are not vaccinated.

The virus is extremely contagious, so if a person who lacks immunity is exposed to chickenpox or shingles, they are likely to contract the illness. The vaccine should be administered 3 to 5 days after exposure to help prevent infection.

Why Is DTaP Immunization Recommended?

The use of the DTaP vaccine has significantly decreased pertussis cases and virtually eradicated childhood cases of diphtheria and tetanus. There are a few possible side effects of DTaP vaccination. These include- Fever, mild irritability, fatigue, appetite loss, tenderness, redness, or swelling in the area where the shot was administered are all possible mild side effects of the vaccine.

There can be extreme reactions but those occur very rarely. A child who received the vaccine may experience a seizure, a high fever, or uncontrollable crying. However, because these reactions or side effects are so uncommon, researchers doubt that the vaccine is even to blame for these side effects. Most children only experience a few minor side effects, if any at all.

Why is HepA recommended?

The HepA vaccine safeguards all children who receive it. It may also aid in outbreak prevention. An outbreak occurs when a disease strikes more people than usual in a specific location. Hepatitis A outbreaks commonly happen in childcare facilities. Some children may be infected while exhibiting no symptoms. However, they still have the potential to infect others. A community can prevent the spread of hepatitis A by immunizing lots of young children.

Why is the Hib Vaccine recommended?

Long-lasting defense against Haemophilus influenza type b is provided by the vaccine. Immunization provides defense against Hib infections of the blood, bones, and joints, pericarditis (an infection of the membrane lining the heart), pneumonia, meningitis, and meningitis.

Why Is the Hep B Vaccine recommended?

The hepatitis B virus can spread among people who are unaware of their infection. As a result, it cannot be prevented by simple caution. For this reason, doctors advise that all infants receive the vaccine as soon as possible after birth. Long-lasting immunity is typically produced by the HepB injection. Most newborns who receive the HepB series are shielded from hepatitis B infection throughout childhood and into adulthood.  Reducing the risk of infection also lowers the risk of liver cancer, chronic liver disease, and cirrhosis.

Why is HPV vaccination recommended?

HPV can bring on genital warts and some cancers. The vaccine is a crucial tool for preventing HPV infection and spread. When administered ahead of potential virus exposure, it works best. Not all HPV strains are safeguarded against by the HPV vaccine. Therefore, using contraceptive protection is always advised for those who are sexually active. Girls and women should visit their gynecologist regularly and get pap smears as directed (typically beginning at age 21).

Young people up to the age of 45 who didn’t begin or finish the series of shots are eligible. (It is advised up to the age of 26. A person can then determine whether it’s a good idea for them along with their doctor after that.)

Why is a flu shot recommended?

During the colder months of the year, influenza viruses typically cause the most illness. The influenza season in Dubai lasts from October to February.

Early in the flu season, ideally by the end of October, is when it is best to get the vaccine. Consequently, the body has a chance to produce antibodies that will guard it against the flu. But receiving a flu shot later in the season is preferable to not receiving one at all. For those who travel, getting a missed flu shot later in the season is especially crucial.

Why is MMR recommended?

Infections like measles, mumps, and rubella can result in serious illness. Children who receive the MMR vaccine will have lifetime immunity to the three diseases in more than 95% of cases. There are a few potential side effects of the MMR vaccine. Serious issues like allergic reactions are uncommon in children. Rash, fever, swollen cheeks, febrile seizures, and minor joint pain are examples of mild to moderate side effects that can occur.

Why is Meningococcal Vaccine Recommended?

A specific type of bacteria is the cause of meningococcal disease. If not treated right away, it can be fatal and result in bloodstream infection, meningitis, or both.

Why Is Rotavirus Immunization Recommended?

Dehydration may result from the severe diarrhea brought on by rotavirus. Some children who contract it require hospital care. Immunization can prevent the rotavirus from spreading throughout a community in addition to protecting the children who receive the vaccine.

Why is the Polio Vaccine Recommended?

The poliovirus is the cause of the crippling and potentially fatal disease known as poliomyelitis or polio. A person who contracts the virus may become paralyzed (unable to move any part of their body). When the poliovirus multiplies and targets the nervous system, it causes paralysis.  It can be fatal and the paralysis can last a lifetime. Most poliovirus infections result in no symptoms at all for the infected individual. Out of 100 people, 25% will experience flu-like symptoms. Usually, these symptoms subside after two to five days.

Rarely, poliovirus infections can be extremely dangerous. People may experience paralysis or weakness in one or both of their arms or legs. This weakness or paralysis may never go away.

FAQs for Childhood Immunization:

  1. Is Immunization/Vaccines Safe?

Yes. Vaccines are as safe as possible, thanks to the long-standing vaccination safety system. Every year, millions of kids safely obtain vaccinations. Most side effects are relatively minor and include injection site pain or swelling.

  1. What are the common side effects of immunization?

Like any medication, vaccines might have some adverse effects. The majority of these side effects are very mild and include fever, fussiness, or soreness where the shot was administered. These are treatable side effects that usually go away after a day or two.

  1. Can a breastfeeding kid get immunization?

Yes, immunizations at the appropriate ages are necessary to protect even breastfed infants. Because of their immature immune systems, newborns are more susceptible to infections.

  1. Should I wait till my child starts going to school?

No. Young children may be exposed to diseases that can be prevented by vaccinations before they start school. Kids under five are particularly vulnerable to illness because their immune systems cannot yet mount an effective defense against infection.

  1. Can I postpone the immunization schedule?

Adhering to the vaccination schedule that is advised in your nation is one of the best ways you can protect your child. Any time you put off getting your child vaccinated, they become more susceptible to illness.

  1. Is it okay for my child to contract chickenpox instead of receiving the Immunization?

Even though chickenpox is a relatively benign illness that many parents will recall from their childhood (the vaccine was first available in 1995), some kids will experience severe cases with complications that could result in death or lifelong disability. The vaccination keeps kids from spreading the illness to their peers, siblings, and friends and removes the possibility of complications from the illness.