Vaccinations for the Health of Our Children

It’s that time of the year when parents are gearing up for the coming school year; forms to fill out, clothes to purchase, and vaccinations to be scheduled.

Some things to know before you head off to the doctor’s office

  • You should tell your doctor if your child has any symptoms of a cold; fever, cough, vomiting, or diarrhea, etc. If you child is ill with a bacteria or viral infection they should wait to get vaccinated.

  • If you are worried about too many shots having an adverse effect on your child’s health, try to schedule their shots at multiple appointments. There is nothing that says your child can’t have shots staggered throughout the year to minimize the shots they receive at one time.

  • Talk to your doctor about the benefits and risks of vaccines. There have been outbreaks of diseases (measles, whooping-cough, diphtheria, etc.) due to some communities not vaccinating their children, and some diseases can be deadly or life altering. So make sure you are aware of how your child can become exposed to these diseases if you decide to not vaccinate. Be aware that some schools will not allow your child to attend if they are not vaccinated.

  • Tell your doctor about any history of allergies. For example, influenza shots are produced using eggs, some shots are stored and administered with products that contain natural rubber latex, and children with existing health conditions should not receive some vaccines.

  • Make sure to get a fact sheet from your doctor’s office on the shots your child is administered. There are signs and symptoms to be aware of, and you should call your child’s doctor immediately if they have any adverse reaction. Although rare, if your child experiences a serious life threatening reaction to the vaccinations, you should call 911.

  • Inform your children on what to expect at the doctor’s office. Some kids do better when they know that facts behind their visit to the doctor. Be sure to keep your conversation light hearted and age appropriate. It may help to schedule some vaccines together. When the whole family gets a flu shot, it decreases the stress for kids. 

Resources: Schedule for Shots10 Things You Need to Know About Childhood Immunizations