When smallpox was finally eradicated in 1979, it had already killed an estimated 300–500 million people in the 20th century. Fast forward to the present and according to UNICEF, 2-3 million deaths from diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis (whooping cough), and measles are averted annually by vaccination
Why Vaccinate? Very simply, it’s a lifesaver. Immunization protects your child from many deadly diseases. For example, polio, which is a vaccine preventable disease, can leave your child paralysed or extremely deformed. Measles and Mumps can lead to diarrhoea or in more serious cases, to acute inflammation of the brain. Getting your baby immunized will allow him to stave off many potentially illnesses their body may not be able to fight.
What if I don’t take my child to be immunized? Prolonged disabilities and the resulting medical bills or long-term disability care can take a financial toll because of the costs of medical care, rehab and lost time at work. In contrast, getting vaccinated against these diseases is a good investment and usually covered by insurance. Immunization records are required for school enrolment, and often for travel, especially internationally where it may be a condition for the issuance of a Visa.
DISEASES EVERY BABY AND CHILD MUST BE IMMUNIZED FROM
|Chickenpox||This airborne disease spreads easily through coughing or sneezing or through direct contact with secretions from the skin rash it causes.|
|Diphtheria||This bacterial disease is marked by the formation of a false membrane, especially in the throat, which can cause death.|
|Haemophilus Influenzae type B (Hib)||This vaccine prevents meningitis (an infection of the covering of the brain and spinal cord), pneumonia (lung infection), epiglottitis (a severe throat infection), and other serious infections.|
|Hepatitis A&B||The virus can cause inflammation of the liver and lead to cirrhosis or liver cancer.|
|Measles||A viral respiratory infection that weakens the immune system and leaves children very susceptible to fatal complications from diarrhoea, pneumonia and malnutrition. Those that survive may suffer blindness, deafness or brain damage.|
|Mumps||Caused by the Mumps virus, patients suffer from inflammation of the brain covering or meninges (called meningitis) headache, stiff neck, avoidance of bright light, nausea and vomiting|
|Pertussis/ Whooping Cough||A highly contagious bacterial infection of the respiratory system that causes uncontrollable coughing. Individuals may have choking spells or may cough so hard that they vomit.|
|Pneumococcal infection||Can result in meningitis, infection of the lung, blood infections and infection of the middle ear, can have long-term effects include deafness or brain damage|
|Polio||A viral infection of the nervous system which can cause crippling paralysis within hours|
|Rotavirus||A leading cause of severe diarrhoea in infants and young children, particularly in the developing world.|
|Tetanus||This condition is characterized by a prolonged contraction of the muscles. Infection generally happens when a cut or deep puncture wound occurs with affected objects such as nails or knives|
|Tuberculosis||Commonly called TB, is a chronic infectious disease caused by a bacteria. This bacteria can destroy parts of the lungs, making it difficult to breathe, it usually affects the lungs, but can attack other parts of the body|
What are the side effects and possible complications which could arise from immunization?
Vaccines may involve some discomfort and may cause pain, redness, or tenderness at the site of injection but this is minimal compared to the pain, discomfort, and trauma of the diseases these vaccines prevent. Serious side effects following vaccination, such as severe allergic reaction, are very rare. The disease-prevention benefits of getting vaccines are much greater than the possible side effects for almost all children.
|A paper copy of your child’s immunization records if fine, but a digital copy is even better. Keep an electronic copy record which can be shared via e-mail and printed for school admissions or travel Visas. Sign up for free today|