Vaccinations are important tools in safeguarding your child’s health. Everyday, your infant is exposed to various communicable diseases that can cause considerable physiological damage and even death. However, vaccinations provide a safe and highly effective way to protect your baby’s wellbeing from these infections. The following questions and answers offer a brief overview of why vaccinations are vital to your child’s health. If you have further questions about how vaccinations work or which ones your child should be receiving, contact the pediatric specialists at Sunrise Children’s Hospital for more information.
What are vaccinations?
Vaccinations are injected substances that inoculate your child from infectious diseases. Between birth and her second birthday, your baby will be vaccinated against more than a dozen dangerous diseases.
How do vaccinations work?
When you or your child receives a vaccine injection, you are actually getting minute amounts of the disease. However, healthcare providers administer only a very weakened or dead form of the virus. This enables your immune system to develop antibodies that can effectively ward off the disease should it attempt to infiltrate your system.
Which vaccinations does my infant need?
No parent wants to see their child in pain as she receives her vaccinations. However, the long-term benefits far outweigh this temporary side effect. At birth, your infant should be vaccinated against hepatitis B. At two months, your baby will receive a second shot for hepatitis B, as well as vaccines for diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, Haemophilus influenzae type b, pneumococcal disease, polio, and rotavirus infections. At six months, your baby will also receive a shot for influenza. At 12 months, she will be vaccinated against chickenpox, measles, mumps, rubella, and hepatitis A. Because the majority of these vaccinations must be administered in specific amounts over several months at a time, it is extremely important that you keep all follow-up appointments with your pediatric physician to ensure that your child’s vaccinations are as effective as possible.
Is your infant up-to-date on her vaccination schedule? Sunrise Children’s Hospital can guide parents through the vaccination process at our Las Vegas facility. To learn more about our children’s hospital, or to schedule an appointment, please call (702) 731-5437.