Vaccines Prevent Illness
Approximately 90 percent of all children in the United States are vaccinated for common ailments, which makes going to a day care facility and school safer for all children, when their risk of passing illnesses to one another is high.
Did You Know?
Some of the most fatal childhood diseases, such as measles, mumps, whooping cough, smallpox, polio and diphtheria, have been wiped out because of vaccines. Though choosing to vaccinate your child may be a controversial issue for one reason or another, prevention is always more desirable than treatment.
What Are Vaccinations?
Vaccinations, or immunizations, contain killed or weakened disease organisms (typically inactive bacteria or weakened viruses). These organisms cause the body to produce antibodies in the immune system, which attack harmful elements inside the body.
• While fighting the virus or bacteria, the antibodies learn how to recognize the real one so they can attack it later, if and/or when the body is exposed to it.
• In the United States, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration reviews all tests conducted on vaccinations before approving their use for the public.
When Should My Child Be Vaccinated?
Newborns are immune to many diseases because of the antibodies they have acquired from their mothers in the womb. Yet, these antibodies last only for approximately one month to a year after birth. Therefore, it is wise to vaccinate children while they are still babies.
• If you are unsure when you should take your child to the doctor for vaccinations, contact your pediatrician, clinic or local health department for more information.
• These preventive care measures are also generally covered under most health insurance plans.