Ask the Doctor: Protecting Your Child With Vaccines

Susan GoldbergVaccination is one of the best ways parents can protect infants, children and teens from a variety of potentially harmful diseases. While these diseases are not common in the U.S., they persist around the world. Susan Goldberg, MD, a pediatrician with Palmetto Pediatrics, answers some common questions.

ImmunizationsQ: Why are infant and childhood immunizations so important?

These shots protect children from a number of potentially life-threatening diseases, including measles, mumps and influenza. By getting your child immunized, you will be fighting disease in two ways. First, you will be protecting your own child. Secondly, since healthy children don’t spread disease, you will be protecting other children as well.

Q: How do immunizations work?

Vaccines work by preparing a child’s body to fight illness. Each immunization contains either a killed or weakened germ that causes a particular disease. The body practices fighting the disease by making antibodies, special proteins that fight that germ. This way, if your child is ever exposed to the actual disease, the antibodies are already in place and the body knows how to fight it. This is called immunity.

Q: Are immunizations safe?

Yes, very safe. But like any medicine they can occasionally cause reactions. Usually these are mild, like a sore arm or a slight fever. Serious reactions are rare. Your doctor or nurse will discuss these with you before giving immunizations to your child. The important thing to remember is that children are in much more danger from the diseases than from the shots!

Q: What if my child missed some shots and is behind schedule?

It is never too late to start getting immunizations. If your child has only had some of his/ her shots, he/she can still be fully immunized. The shots already given will count. Just continue the schedule where they left off.

This Draft Has Sidebar Blocks
Sidebar Block 1
Protect Your Baby
and Prevent Disease

Get the right vaccines at the right time.
This vaccine schedule shows the recommended ages at which each vaccine dose should be given.

At birth HepB
2 months HepB + DTaP + PCV13 + HIB + Polio + RV
4 months DTaP + PCV13 + HIB + Polio + RV
6 months HepB + DTaP + PCV + Polio + RV
12 months MMR + Varicella + HepA
15 months HIB + Prev13 + DTaP
18 months HepA #2
This Vaccine Prevents this Disease
Varicella Chickenpox
DTaP Diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis
HepA Hepatitis A
HepB Hepatitis B
Hib Bacterial meningitis, epiglottis
MMR Measles, mumps, rubella
PCV Pneumococcus
Polio Polio
RV Rotavirus
Sidebar Block 2
Ask the Doctor:
Protecting Your Child With Vaccines
Sidebar Block 3
Sidebar Block 4
Aiken Regional Medical Centers is owned and operated by a subsidiary of Universal Health Services, Inc.(UHS), a King of Prussia, PA-based company, that is one of the largest healthcare management companies in the nation.        

Aiken Regional Medical Centers

302 University Parkway
Aiken, SC 29801
803-641-5000

PRIVACY POLICY / HIPAA STATEMENT / PHYSICIAN DISCLAIMER
© 2014 Aiken Regional Medical Centers. All rights reserved.

 

Note:The information on this Web site is provided as general health guidelines and may not be applicable to your particular health condition. Your individual health status and any required medical treatments can only be properly addressed by a professional healthcare provider of your choice. Remember: There is no adequate substitution for a personal consultation with your physician. Neither Aiken Regional Medical Centers, or any of their affiliates, nor any contributors shall have any liability for the content or any errors or omissions in the information provided by this Web site.          

The information, content and artwork provided by this Web site is intended for non-commercial use by the reader. The reader is permitted to make one copy of the information displayed for his/her own non-commercial use. The making of additional copies is prohibited.