There are important vaccines for infants that must not be missed. Generally, immunization is an act of securing one’s immune system. It is also a way of protecting oneself against serious diseases. Both adults and infants can benefit from immunization. Routine child immunization is usually from age 0-1 year. Hence, every child should receive immunization at the right time.
It is popularly said that prevention is better than cure. Do you know that the best way to secure your child’s immunity is by vaccinating them at their due dates? In addition, immunization protects your child against some childhood diseases like yellow fever, measles, diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, polio myelitis etc.
Most diseases that once killed or injured thousands of children many years ago have been now been eliminated completely through the help of vaccination. However, you should know that vaccines do not treat or cure diseases. But rather, they prevent your child from certain childhood diseases. They give them antibodies to fight against those diseases. Vaccines does not only protect your child, but also protect other children by greatly reducing dangerous diseases that spreads from child to child.
Therefore, you must receive these specific important vaccines for infants at certain ages of your child’s growth. Each vaccine has it’s benefits. In this article, we will discuss briefly some of them.
3 Benefits of Immunizing Your Child
- Immunization saves your child’s life: By vaccinating your child, he or she is saved and prevented from falling sick by those killers diseases in children. For example, polio was once a globally feared disease. It caused death and paralysis of many children, but with the help of vaccination, polio cases have almost been completely eradicated from the world.
- Vaccination is very safe and effective: Vaccines are not given to sick children until after recovery. Sometimes, vaccines may involve some discomforts in the child which include pains, tenderness, high temperature (fever), redness at injection site e.t.c. But these are very minimal, as compared to the discomforts caused by the actual diseases. Serious side effect are very rare. Therefore, the disease prevention benefits of vaccination is far better than possible side effects of the vaccines.
- Immunization saves family’s time and money: Most vaccine-preventable diseases can lead to prolonged disabilities that may prevent the growing child from playing with their peers. Vaccinating your child reduces spending money on health issues that may be caused by those preventable diseases. It also saves your time. Many international organizations have partnered with governments all around the world to make vaccines accessible and affordable to all individuals in the society.
Important Vaccines For Infants and When To Receive Them
Below are the various types of important vaccines available for infants. Some of them come in several doses received at different times.
At birth, your baby takes 3 vaccines which are:
- Bacille calmette guerin (BCG): Prevents your child against tuberculosis.
- Oral polio vaccine(OPV) 0: Prevents your child from polio myelitis.
- Hepatitis B vaccine (HBV): Prevents your child from Hepatitis B viral disease.
At 6 weeks, your child takes 3 vaccines, which are:
- Pneumococcal conjugate vaccine(PCV) 1: Prevents your child against pneumonia.
- Pentavalent 1: It prevents your child against 5 diseases. They include Diphtheria (against nose and throat infection), Pertussis (against whooping cough), Hemophilus influenza (against eye, ear,nose and throat infection), Tetanus (against tetanus infection), and (HBV) which contains some dose of hepatitis vaccine and prevents against hepatitis virus.
- Oral polio vaccine(OPV) 1: Prevents your child against poliomyelitis, a disease that causes paralysis of the lower limb.
At 10 weeks, your baby takes 3 vaccines, which are:
- Pneumococcal conjugate vaccine(PCV) 2: It protects your child from the organism causing pneumonia (streptococcus pneumoniae).
- Pentavalent vaccine 2: Protect your child against the 5 diseases mentioned above.
- Oral polio vaccine(OPV) 2: Protects your child against poliomyelitis, a disease causing paralysis of the lower limb.
At 14 weeks, your child takes 4 vaccines, which are:
- Pneumococcal conjugate vaccine(PCV) 3: Protects your child against pneumonia.
- Pentavalent vaccine 3: It protects your child against the 5 diseases mentioned above.
- Oral polio vaccine(OPV) 3: Protects your child against poliomyelitis which is a disease that causes paralysis of the lower limb.
- Inactivated polio vaccine(IPV): It produces antibodies in the blood, that prevents the virus from getting to the central nervous system(CNS) and protects your child against poliomyelitis.
At 6 months, your baby takes:
- First dose of vitamin A: which protects their eyes and also gives them good vision.
At 9 months, your baby takes 3 vaccines, which are:
- Yellow fever vaccine: Protects your child from yellow fever.
- Measles vaccine: Protects your child against measles.
- Meningitis vaccine(CSM): Protects your child from meningitis, which is inflammation of the meninges (a membrane that envelops the brain and spinal cord).
At 1 Year, your baby takes:
- Second dose of vitamin A: which protect their eyes and also give them good vision.
- International journal of Epidemiology
- Vaccines.gov – Five important reasons to vaccinate your child
- Stanford Childrens – Why childhood immunization are important
- Health LinkBC – Benefits of immunizing your child