Find out why it's important to pay close attention to your child's vaccination schedule.
Some parents feel that diseases like whooping cough, mumps, measles or polio are non-existent and therefore no longer a threat to their children. But it's important for parents to know more about these diseases and the consequences of not vaccinating your children from an early age.
THREE MYTHS SURROUNDING IMMUNIZATION
MYTH #1: "Diseases like smallpox, whooping cough, diphtheria, tetanus, mumps, measles or polio are wiped out, so my child won't get them anyway."
FACT: Of the diseases just mentioned, only smallpox has been virtually wiped out worldwide. If whole populations of children are immunized, the particular infection becomes rare, but the "germs" still exist.
If parents do not immunize their children, then we could soon see a resurgence of these diseases.
MYTH #2: "If my child is afflicted, there is a cure that will come to the rescue."
FACT: Not true. There is no specific antibiotic to cure most of the diseases mentioned above. It is far safer to prevent the disease through vaccinations.
MYTH #3: "My child will suffer a severe reaction from the vaccines because she will be injected with the actual virus."
FACT: Vaccines are not full-fledged viruses; they are usually comprised of dead virus, weakened virus strains or portions of virus bodies. Some vaccines cause mild, but rarely severe, reactions. In general, the risks posed by vaccination are slight and are much less than the risks posed by acquiring the actual disease.
To help you learn more about the vaccines recommended for Canadian children, visit the Canadian Pediatric Society website: http://www.cps.ca/en/.
WHEN YOU WANT PAIN RELIEF FOR YOUR LITTLE ONE
There is a chance that vaccinations may cause mild pain and redness – sometimes with a bit of swelling at the site of injection. If necessary to help ease the pain, the Canadian Pediatric Society recommends giving infants acetaminophen, such as Infants’ TYLENOL® Concentrated Drops, for infants under 23 months of age, or Children’s TYLENOL® Suspension Liquid, for children over two years of age. Wait at least 6 hours after vaccination before giving it to your child, since it could impact how well the vaccine works.
Dr. Dina, pediatrician and mom of 4, offers helpful expert advice