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Why Your Children Should Be Immunized

Why Your Children Should Be Immunized

August 30, 2017 - Oluwaseun Olowoyeye

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The rate of mortality in our country has been alarming. The advent of vaccines has helped in curbing this menace to a minimum. Vaccination or Immunization is a proven tool for controlling and eliminating life-threatening infectious diseases and is estimated to avert between 2 and 3 million deaths each year. It is a process whereby vaccines are administered to make a person immune or resistant to an infectious disease. These vaccines stimulate the body’s own immune system to protect the person against subsequent infection or disease by producing antibodies to fight the antigens of any infectious disease. Here are reasons why your children should be immunized.

It is one of the most cost-effective health investments that has been made available and accessible as life-saving measures for adults and children. Vaccines help to keep children healthy by protecting them from infectious diseases. They are provided for both adults and children. Through immunization, some diseases have been completely eradicated throughout the world. An example is polio. Immunization can be grouped into two:

  • Active immunization: This occurs when antibodies are created by the immune system after contact with an infectious disease, when next there is an attack the immune response fights the pathogen efficiently due to the already existing immunity it has created after the first contact. This is the common case in many of the childhood infections that makes a person immune to a disease after contacting it once. Artificial active immunization can be created through a process called inoculation, it involves inoculating microbes into a person which creates antibodies to defend the body against the infection disease.
  • Passive immunization: This immunization has an immediate impact, but not long-lasting protection against a pathogen. It may arise naturally, such as when a foetus receives antibodies from the mother across the placenta or when a breastfeeding infant ingests antibodies in the mother’s milk. Artificial Passive immunization can be conferred by receiving hepatitis B (HBV) vaccine. A person lacking immunity to HBV can receive a preparation called immune serum globulin that contains antibodies formed against the virus. These antibodies are obtained from serum taken from an animal or human donors who previously were infected by or immunized against the virus. There are certain vaccines and that have been developed to prevent these diseases.

 

Why Your Children Should Be Immunized?

It is best to secure your children s health by getting them immunized. This is better than risking their lives to various childhood disease.

Immunizations can save your child’s life: Gone are the days when child and infant mortality were on the increase due to advance in medical science, most children can be protected against more diseases than ever before. Some diseases that once injured or killed thousands of children, have been eliminated completely and others are close to extinction primarily due to safe and effective vaccines. Polio is one example of the great impact.

Immunization is very safe and effective: Vaccines are only given to children after a long and careful review by scientists, doctors, and healthcare professionals. Most of these vaccines are effective due to the required cold chain system that is maintained to preserve it. This vaccine might accompany mild to moderate reactions such as discomfort, redness and tenderness at the injection site 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.

Immunization protects others: Majority of Children are spared from various vaccine-preventable diseases due to immunization.  This has greatly reduced child mortality rate. In fact, we have seen resurgences of measles and whooping cough (pertussis) over the past few years. Some babies are too young to be protected by vaccination, others may not be able to receive certain vaccinations due to severe allergies, weakened immune systems from conditions like leukaemia, or other reasons. To help keep them safe, it is important that you and your children to get vaccinated fully, this will help prevent the spread of these diseases to the babies, your friends and loved ones.

Immunizations can save your family time and money: A healthy child who performs his or duties without any assistance saves the family of undue pressure and stress but a child with a vaccine-preventable disease can be denied attendance at schools or child care facilities. This can also take a financial toll on the family because of medical bills or long-term disability care. Getting vaccinated against these diseases is indeed a good investment.

Immunization protects future generations : Vaccines have reduced and in some cases, eliminated many diseases that killed or severely disabled people. For example, smallpox vaccination eradicated that disease worldwide. Your children don’t have to get smallpox shots anymore because the disease no longer exists. By vaccinating children against rubella (German measles), the risk that pregnant women will pass this virus on to their foetus or new born has been dramatically reduced. If we continue vaccinating now, and vaccinating completely, parents in the future may be able to trust that some diseases of today will no longer be around to harm their children in the future. However, World Immunization Week is done on 24-30 April 2017, its aim is to raise awareness about the critical importance of full immunization throughout life and achieve the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals.

 

World Immunization Week

Is a Global Public Health campaign to raise awareness and increase rates of immunization against vaccine -preventable diseases around the world. It takes place each year during last week of April. Immunization can protects against 25 different infectious agents or diseases, from infancy to old age. It includes Diphtheria, measles, pertussis ,polio and tetanus. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates active immunization currently averts 2 to 3 million deaths every year. However, 22.6 million infants worldwide are still missing out on basic vaccines, mostly in developing countries. Inadequate immunization coverage rates often result from limited resources, competing health priorities and poor management.

 

 

 

 

 

Sources:

http://www.who.int/topics/immunization/en/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Immunization_Week

https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/index.html http://www.webmd.com/children/vaccines/ss/slideshow-vaccine-preventable-diseases

 

 

Oluwaseun Olowoyeye

One thought on “Why Your Children Should Be Immunized

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