Posts for tag: Immunizations
Being a responsible parent often means being proactive. This is true when it comes to your child's education, their safety in a car, and their health. One of the best ways you can be proactive as a parent is by properly immunizing your children against vaccine-preventable illnesses. At Jacksonville Kids Pediatrics in Jacksonville, Florida, Dr. Alexandra Kostur and nurse practitioners Lori Barnhart and Julie Stephens believe in working alongside parents to provide the best care for their children.
Prior to the routine use of vaccines, parents lived in fear of their child acquiring a crippling or life-threatening illness. Diphtheria, a bacterial toxin that causes inflammation of the mucus membranes, claimed tens of thousands of lives in the 1920's. Contracting polio, a virus that leads to muscle wasting, paralysis, and even death, was a very real possibility for children in the 1940's and 1950's. Even measles was considered a rite of passage at one time. As immunizations became available, these diseases have, over time, been eradicated from the United States and beyond. The last case of polio was reported in 1979, while there have only been five cases of diphtheria in over a decade. Tetanus, rubella, and mumps are also exceedingly rare thanks to childhood immunizations.
The importance of immunizing
Many parents wonder, "If polio, diphtheria and other diseases aren't a threat, why do I need to immunize my children?" While the vast majority of people will never be exposed to many of the diseases we vaccinate against, it only takes one person traveling from a place where vaccinations aren't as common and these illnesses still exist to make them a possibility again. There are also illnesses that are still circulating in our country, including influenza, meningitis, and pertussis, that can have devastating consequences without vaccines. As the saying goes, it's better to have something - in this case, immunizations - and not need it than to need it and not have it.
To schedule your child's immunizations or boosters, contact Jacksonville Kids Pediatrics in Jacksonville, Florida to make an appointment with our pediatric staff today!
The importance of immunizations
Childhood immunizations are one of the most important safeguards against communicable diseases and their serious, long-term complications. Your pediatrician closely adheres to the vaccination schedules published by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Why? Well, there's nothing more important than your youngster's health and well-being, and immunizations effectively guard them.
Just what is an immunization?
Most immunizations are given as "shots," or injections, but some, such as the Rotavirus vaccine, are oral medications. However administered, vaccines boost your child's immune system in its battle against diseases which easily spread from person to person.
Each vaccine contains a small amount of a killed or weakened micro-organisms. These altered viruses or bacteria raise the body's defenses against a particular illness such as chicken pox. pneumonia, polio, tetanus, and more...up to 14 in all by time your child is two years old, says the CDC.
Are immunizations necessary?
Your pediatrician, his or her colleagues and decades of research prove that vaccines protect the health of individual children and of the community at large. Also called herd immunity, community immunity works best when as many babies and youngsters receive all their "shots" on schedule. Community immunity protects youngsters who cannot receive vaccines because of cancer treatment, HIV infection or other serious reason. It also shields the general population when people travel from countries which cannot provide access to these important medications.
Both the AAP and the CDC publish and recommend set vaccine schedules carried out at well-baby and well-child visits at the doctor's office. In addition, there is a "catch-up" schedule for children who have begun their immunizations late or had them interrupted by illness or other serious concern.
Your pediatrician's services
They're so important. Your child's doctor keeps your child's immunization records and can distribute them to schools, camps, college, sports, daycare and other organizations who require proof of up-to-date vaccines. The doctor also monitors your child for any adverse reactions, although typically, vaccines produce no more than:
- Localized redness and soreness at the injection site
- Low grade fever
- Pain and swelling
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, immunizations prevent millions of deaths a year, has prevented or even eradicated once-widespread diseases, and are absolutely necessary in the worldwide fight against deadly diseases. Doing your part to keep your child on schedule with their immunizations is crucial to the health of both your child and those around them. Find out more about immunizations schedules and how they benefit you and your child with Dr. Alexandra Kostur at Jacksonville Kids Pediatrics in Jacksonville, FL.
What are immunizations?
Vaccines are tiny doses of weakened germs which help the body build immunity to certain diseases. A vaccination is the act of getting a vaccine injected into your body, usually in the form of a shot. The process of becoming immune to a disease is called immunization and occurs after receiving the vaccination. When your pediatrician talks about an immunization schedule, they are referring to how far apart each vaccination is and how long it will take your child to become immune to the disease in question.
What is herd immunity?
Vaccines work. They protect against deadly diseases and ensure that even those people who cannot receive their vaccinations remain free from disease. Germs travel from person to person quickly. Vaccines make people immune to those germs, meaning that the germs cannot infect a large number of people in a short amount of time. Babies who are very young and people with certain medical conditions cannot receive vaccinations, making herd immunity crucial to keeping you, as well as those around you, safe from disease.
How can I keep my child on track for their vaccines?
Keeping up with your child’s regularly scheduled appointments with their pediatrician will ensure that they receive their vaccines on time. Your pediatrician will help your child stay on schedule and keep track of their growth and development. These regular appointments also give your child’s pediatrician the chance to catch and treat illnesses or conditions at their earliest stages.
Vaccinations in Jacksonville, FL
Vaccinations are an important facet of your child’s health as well as the health of those around you. For more information on keeping up with your child’s immunization schedule or what makes vaccinations important, please contact Dr. Kostur at Jacksonville Kids Pediatrics in Jacksonville, FL. Call (904) 446-9991 to schedule your child’s appointment for immunizations today!