When it comes to immunization and vaccination shots, many parents want to know how long their kids are going to be protected. This only makes sense, as vaccines are not what you can call cheap. Furthermore, the number of shots that children are recommended to get are not just few; from their birth to their teenage years, children are going to receive several of them every year.
The answer to this very common question depends on the type of vaccine to be administered. There are some shots that may last for a lifetime, such as those for hepatitis B or for the measles. In most cases, these vaccines can make a person immune against these diseases for the rest of his/her life.
However, there are others that need to be periodically administered. An example of this is the tetanus shot. It can protect the person who has received it for many years, but in order to stay protected, he/she needs to get it periodically.
The vaccine for the whooping cough, also known as the pertussis vaccine, is another type of shot that does not provide lifelong immunity against the disease. This is one of the possible reasons as to why outbreaks of the disease still take place. While pertussis is not really a huge problem for older children and adults, it can be for infants and very young children. It is actually because of this that adolescents, teenagers, and adults are not getting pertussis boosters together with their diphtheria boosters and tetanus vaccinations. This combination is widely regarded as a crucial step in the hopes of having the infection under control.
As a parent, you should understand just how important it is for you to record all of the vaccinations that your child is receiving. This is going to help the primary health care provider of your child establish a timeline as to when your child should get a booster.
Establishing a Schedule for Your Child’s Vaccines
As soon as your child receives his/her first series of vaccines, the doctor is going to create a timeline and a corresponding schedule for future shots. The schedule that your child’s primary health care giver is going to develop depends on several factors. The doctor may recommend immunizations based on the location of your residence, the current health of your child, and the vaccines that are already available or can already be given right away. Travel plans are also going to be considered by the doctor when creating this schedule and timeline of immunization shots.
For example, the Hepatitis B Vaccine, commonly referred to simply as HBV, is often the first ever type of immunization that children receive, seeing that its first dose should ideally be administered at birth. However, children who have not been given this vaccine can still get it at a later age.
Some of the other types of routine shots that are often given to infants are the following:
• Haemophilus Ifluenzae Type B (HIB) Vaccine
• Diphtheria, Tetanus, and Acellular Pertussis (DTaP) Vaccine
• Rotavirus Vaccine (Rota)
• Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine (PCV)
• Inactivated Poliovirus Vaccine (IPV)
These vaccines are typically administered at 2 months, with their second and third doses being given at 4 and 6 months.
The Influenza Vaccine – One of the Most Important Immunization Shots
By the time that your child turns 6 months old, his/her pediatrician may already advise you to have your kid receive the Influenza vaccine. It is also highly recommended for children to receive this type of vaccine in an annual basis.
Doctors recommend the Influenza vaccine to babies ages 6 months and older. For children who are younger than 9 years old, and has not received one yet, the vaccine is going to be administered in a couple of doses. The two doses should be separated by at least one month.
Combination Shots – What are These?
There are some cases wherein the doctor may have your child get a combination vaccine. As the term already suggests, a combination vaccine combines a number of separate shots. These are often recommended by health care professionals so that children are administered with fewer shots. Not all vaccines are going to come in combinations; some are still going to be given separately. If you are unsure as to which individual and combination vaccine shots your child should receive, make sure that you discuss this with your doctor.
It is very important for parents to fully understand how important it is to follow the recommended schedule for vaccination shots, as these immunizations can prevent potentially life-threatening diseases.