The soul is healed by being with children. - Fyodor Dostoyevsky

Immunizations & vaccines

Immunisations, also known as vaccines, protect us from serious diseases and prevent the spread of those diseases to others. Immunisation works by injecting a weak form of a specific disease into a person, which causes the body to produce antibodies and boosts immunity. Once this is done, the person will either not contract that disease, or will get a much less severe bout.

Possible Causes:

Vaccines are given to children to prevent them from getting serious and potentially fatal diseases. Speak to your paediatrician and create a schedule for your child’s vaccines. Some of the vaccines that will be included in this schedule will be – diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, measles, mumps, rubella, influenza and others.

The list of vaccines that are prescribed, and the schedule for giving them, changes every few years, so get the right schedule of vaccinations for your baby from your paediatrician at Medcare.

Risk Factors:

All children need to get the vaccines as prescribed by their paediatrician. This is not dependant on any particular risk factor being present in a child.

When children start attending school, they are exposed to the outside world and to vaccine-preventable diseases. Since we all want what’s best for our children in terms of their health, we must maintain an up to date immunization schedule to minimize these risks. The major diseases that can be prevented by following an immunization schedule are mentioned below:

  • Whooping cough is dangerous in children under the age of 18 months, because the coughing spells can make them stop breathing.
  • Varicella or chicken pox is a life-threatening disease that is highly contagious and without the vaccine, it can spread through the air by sneezing or coughing and by direct contact with fluid from chickenpox blisters.
  • Measles is a respiratory disease caused by a virus. It can have life-threatening complications.
  • Mumps is easily spread through saliva and mucus. It can cause a number of problems, including inflammation of the brain, ovaries and breast tissue.

Immunization protects our children from serious diseases and also prevents the spread of those diseases to others. Children who do not receive vaccines are not the only ones at risk. If a child contracts one of these serious diseases, it can spread to others. This is particularly dangerous for children who cannot get vaccinations because of medical problems or those whose bodies did not build up immunity after a vaccine.

Some of these infectious diseases like polio and small pox have been completely eradicated while others have been thwarted. It is your duty as a parent to ensure that your child follows the immunization schedule and receives protection from these deadly viruses.

Signs & Symptoms:

Vaccinations are to be given to all children. You don’t need to observe any symptoms, just follow the schedule given by your paediatrician.

If you think your child has or may have an allergy to any component in a vaccine, be sure to share that information with your doctor.

Diagnosis:

When you receive an immunization vaccine, you're injected with a weakened form of the disease. This triggers your body's immune response, causing it to make antibodies to fight that disease, thus enhancing your immunity.

Then, if you're ever again exposed to the actual disease-causing organism, your immune system is prepared to fight the infection. A vaccine will usually prevent you from getting a disease or make it less severe.

Treatment Options:

An immunisation or vaccine works by using a small amount of a virus or bacteria which triggers your child’s immune response. This helps the child to produce antibodies which prevent them from contracting the disease. Keep a list of the vaccinations to be administered, and the schedule. Ensure that you bring your child on the scheduled date to Medcare and get the vaccination administered.

Allergic reactions usually happen very soon after getting a vaccine, and our doctors are well equipped to manage them. In extremely rare instances a high fever may occur with a vaccine. Fevers like this will not harm your children, but they can make them uncomfortable and upset. There may be some soreness or redness around the injection site.

FAQs:الأسئلة الشائعة:
  • I worry about the side effects of vaccines.

    A: Any side effects or reactions to vaccines are usually mild. Your child may get a low grade fever, or some redness around the place where the injection was given. In case of high fever or an allergic reaction, take your child to the paediatric department for treatment. The benefits of immunisations far outweigh the discomfort of side effects, so you should follow the schedule very carefully.

  • I have never heard of diphtheria or whooping cough. Why do I need to vaccinate my child against rare diseases?

    A: It’s vaccines that keep these diseases rare. So do give your child all recommended vaccines. In communities where vaccination rates are low, rare diseases are often seen again.

  • How long does the immunity built by a vaccine last?

    A: For some vaccines, the immunity against the disease is lifelong, for example, the series given for measles or Hepatitis B. For other diseases, like tetanus, the vaccine needs a ‘booster shot’ after some years.