We live in a world filled with environmental and health risk factors. As a first time parent, you would naturally want the best for your baby’s health and ensure that he/she remains strong enough to resist disease.
Today, we will discuss about the necessary vaccine for babies. We will first learn about the history and background of vaccination, its importance, and the list of vaccines that are vital for your child.
History and Background of Vaccination
In order for us to be protected from natural infection, vaccines are produced to help us gain immunity. The first vaccine to be created is the smallpox vaccine. Back in the late 1700s, there was a physician working in southern England named Edward Jenner who began his research and investigative studies based on what he noticed from the milkmaids who didn’t acquire smallpox, which is a widespread disease that existed across the English countryside for several years and killed as many as 500 million people.
But how do vaccines work? Because of our inherently smart immune system, these vaccines are primarily being activated by our immune system in order for us to avoid the potential harm from different viruses, bacterias, and infections. If a vaccinated person gets sick with certain diseases, he can never get sick from them again even if he spends hours in a room with an infected person who carries a very contagious disease.
With the use of various types of white blood cells and their specific attack mechanisms, your body will immediately fight off a specific disease-causing substance which shows our natural immunity from diseases. Even if the vaccine does not completely eradicate the disease, it can trigger an increase immune response that will reduce one’s symptoms.
Simply put that vaccines work by creating the same biological reaction a person would get from the disease without actually forcing you to get sick along the way. To fulfill that goal, vaccines encourage the body’s immune system to produce substances known as antibodies which are proteins produced by white blood cells to eliminate diseases.
Importance of Vaccination for Babies
Getting vaccinated is similar to obtaining antibodies through our natural biological process occurring inside our immune system. Also, it is much safer than exposing yourself through natural infection to get immunity. Babies have very weak immune system so they need to be vaccinated to fortify their immunity and keep them strong, healthy, and resistant to infectious and fatal diseases.
If a baby does not get his or her vaccine, he or she will have a higher risk for serious and dangerous diseases such as hearing loss, amputation of the leg or arm, paralysis of limbs, brain damage, and even death.
List of Vaccines Necessary for Babies
In order to be knowledgeable about getting your baby vaccinated, below is a list of vaccines essential for your child, according to various sources.
- 1. Hepatitis B vaccine – given after birth and can be given to kids who didn’t get immunized previously. It is necessary to give young kids the first dose after birth and second dose should be given 1-2 months after the initial dose.
- 2. Diphtheria, tetanus, and acellular pertussis vaccine or DTaP – for 2 months, 4 months, 6 months until 15-18 months.
- 3. Haemophilus influenzae type b vaccine or Hib – for 2 months, 4 months, 6 months
- 4. Inactivated pollovirus vaccine or IPV – for 2 months, 4 months, 6-18 months
- 5. Pneumococcal conjugate vaccine or PCV – for 2 months, 4 months, 6-18 months
- 6. Rotavirus vaccine or RV – for 2 months, 4 months, 6 months
- 7. Influenza or flu vaccine – for 6 month old babies, it is recommended for them to have two doses at least one month apart.
- 8. Measles, mumps, and rubella (German measles) vaccine or MMR – for 12-15 months
- 9. Chickenpox (varicella) vaccine – for 12-15 months
- 10. Hepatitis A vaccine or HepA – given as two shots at least 6 months apart.
- 11. Human papillomavirus vaccine or HPV – given in two shots over a 6- to 12-month period.
You are now informed about the details concerning the essential vaccines which are recommended for your baby in order for him or her to be safe and protected from countless infectious diseases. Consult your doctor or pediatrician about the immunization plan suitable for your baby’s age and health.