19 April

Importance of immunisation for the health of your child

People tend to have their own reservations about vaccinations. One of my patients had asked me - Doctor, why should I get my child injections in the name of vaccinations. She is healthy and does not have any disease. I tend to tell my patients - Vaccinations are like an insurance policy. You buy insurance, to protect yourself from any unforeseen accidents or illness that may happen.

The chances are less but prevention is better than going through the disease. Parents would want to do everything possible to make sure their kids are healthy and protected. Vaccination is one of the best ways to do that.

Immunization is the process of building up the immune system of the baby against the attacks by foreign substances. The vaccine usually contains a minute quantity of the pathogen which is much less potent to cause a disease in the baby, but it introduces the baby to the pathogen early on, so the immune system of the baby recognizes the pathogen as “foreign” and produces antibodies against it. It is a way of preparing the system for a possible future attack. Thus when the body is exposed to one strand of a virus or a foreign agent in controlled conditions, the body learns to adapt.

Due to the advances in immunizations and safe and effective vaccines,  many diseases which used to kill many babies in the past have been completely eradicated and others are close to extinction. Eg - Polio is almost in the verge of being eradicated from India. Vaccination protects children from several illness and complications of certain illness like measles, mumps, diphtheria, rubella, pertussis etc. Parents are sometimes concerned about the redness, tenderness at the site of injection of the vaccine. Yes, they are uncomfortable for the child, but it is much better than the pain or complications of the diseases these vaccines prevent.

The diseases targeted by the government's immunization programme are:

  • tuberculosis
  • diphtheria
  • pertussis
  • polio
  • measles
  • tetanus
  • hepatitis B
  • hepatitis A
  • typhoid
  • mumps
  • rubella
  • gastroenteritis (rotavirus).

Babies may have to be given multiple doses of the same disease to give complete protection. So make sure you complete all the doses prescribed by your doctor. Taking partial doses may not protect your child from the disease. 

 

Please use this vaccination calendar to see when and what vaccines are due to your child. Type in the date of birth of your child and you can see approximate dates when your child is due for each of the vaccines. This vaccination schedule is based on the recommendations of IAP (Indian Academy of Pediatrics) Please discuss with your doctor before administering the vaccines to your child.

Last modified on Monday, 06 August 2018 13:04
Dr Padma

Dr Padma is a Family care physician and is the Founder and CEO of MedHealthTV.

www.medhealthtv.com

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