Posts for tag: Vaccines
You might brush off the early signs of whooping cough because they look an awful lot like the common cold. Older children and teens may develop congestion, mild fever, cough, or runny nose; however, within the first 1-2 weeks you will notice that the cough gets worse. In fact, your child may develop severe and sudden coughing fits.
Children and newborns are more likely to display severe symptoms. They may not have a whoop in their cough, but they may vomit or show severe fatigue after coughing. While anyone can develop whooping cough, infants are at particular risk for serious and life-threatening complications so it’s important to have your family vaccinated.
While newborns are too young to be vaccinated against whooping cough, you should make sure that the rest of your family is fully vaccinated. The DTaP vaccine will protect against whooping cough and will be administered at 2, 4, and 6 months old, again at 15 to 18 months, and again at 6 years for a total of five doses.
If you suspect that your child might have whooping cough, you must call your pediatrician right away. Children under 18 months old may require hospitalization so doctors can continuously monitor them, as children are more likely to stop breathing with whooping cough. Of course, coming in during the early stages of the infection is important as antibiotics are more effective at the very start of the illness.
- Resting as much as possible
- Staying hydrated
- Sticking to smaller meals to safeguard against cough-induced vomiting
- Making sure your family is up to date on their vaccinations
Has your child gotten his or her shots? "Shots" is the out-dated term for childhood immunizations, or vaccines. These medications are injected into the muscle at prescribed doses and intervals to help the immune system produce antibodies to shield against communicable diseases. At ABC Pediatrics in McKinney, your team of four doctors stress how important these child immunizations are in keeping your family healthy for life.
Why are child immunizations important?
Immunizations help control the spread of communicable diseases, such as measles and the flu. These diseases by themselves cause harmful symptoms and potentially catastrophic side effects, and even death. When they spread unchecked throughout a population, such as a school, daycare or neighborhood, they do considerable harm to people with weakened immune systems, the elderly and others who cannot receive vaccines because of medical limitations.
The concept of immunizing as many people as possible, and protecting the medically weak, is called herd immunity. Also known as community immunity, herd immunity helps reduce or eliminate diseases from a population.
According to the US Department of Health & Human Services, pneumococcal infections are a great example of how effective herd immunity can be. The occurrence of this disease has decreased drastically since children have begun receiving pneumonia shots.
The child immunization schedules in McKinney
In all, your child be protected against 18 communicable diseases by the time he or she reaches the age of 18. ABC Pediatrics follows the immunization schedule published by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Schedules cover ages 0 to age 6, ages 7 through 18, and also include a catch-up schedule for children who have started late or were interrupted by illness or other circumstance.
Included in the schedules are diseases such as:
- Chicken pox
At ABC Pediatrics, your child's physician will keep track of his or her vaccines and distribute documentation to schools, sports teams, day care and other organizations as needed. Also, the CDC provides parents with an immunization tracker tool on its website so you know what vaccine is administered and when.
Reactions to vaccines
ABC Pediatrics maintains that vaccines are safe and effective in protecting your child against the harmful communicable diseases. Many vaccines cause no localized reaction at all, while some may make your child run a low grade fever or make his or her arm tender and warm.
We'll be happy to answer any questions you have regarding child immunizations. To schedule your next well-child visit, phone ABC Pediatrics in McKinney, TX, at (972) 569-9904.