After waiting for nine long months of pregnancy for your baby, you must be on cloud nine when you hold your child for the first time in your arms. That is the moment when you are overjoyed with happiness and contentment.
You want to do whatever it takes to love and protect your child for anything and everything. Well, to keep your child safe from any of the health issues, baby vaccination is must.
Your doctor may also insist you on getting all the baby vaccinations on time starting right from the day one of the births of your child. Vaccines for different diseases help to protect your child from dangerous diseases and strengthen their immune system.
The vaccination course of a newborn baby starts from birth till a few years. Several vaccines are shot within one year of a child’s birth and others go yearly or half-yearly. Let us know more about the baby vaccination package of your newborn child.
Importance of vaccines
As soon as a child is born, breast milk is just enough to cure the baby of diseases and provide him/her with the essential nutrients. Along with breastmilk, vaccines too play an important role in guarding a child against disease and illness.
Vaccines work by imitating infection of a certain disease in your child’s body. As a result, your child’s immune system tends to develop weapons called antibodies. These antibodies fight the disease that the vaccine is meant to prevent. With the antibodies in place, your child’s body can defeat future infections from the disease.
List of vaccines for babies
Here is the list of important baby vaccinations and everything you must know about each of them:
- Hepatitis B: Hepatitis B is an infection of the liver. Hep B is a three-shot vaccination. The first one is given at the time of birth and the other two follows. It is a mandatory vaccination that every child must get.
- Rotavirus: The RV injection protects against rotavirus disease. It is the major cause of diarrhea, vomiting, and dehydration amongst infants. RV is given in two or three doses.
- DTaP vaccine: The DTaP vaccine protects against diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis. Diphtheria swells up the throat, tetanus painfully tightens the muscles, and pertussis is whooping cough that makes it hard for kids to breathe. It is a five dose vaccine given between infancy and childhood.
- Hib vaccine: This vaccine protects against Haemophilus influenza type b. This is a bacteria that causes infection in the brain and spinal cord that can severely damage the baby’s brain and hearing.
- Pneumococcal vaccine: The pneumococcal vaccine protects against streptococcus pneumonia, which causes meningitis, pneumonia, and some ear infections. It is given in a series of four doses.
- IPV vaccine: This vaccine protects against polio. Polio is a disease that used to paralyze more than 25,000 people each year. This vaccine is also given in four doses.
- Influenza flu: Influenza vaccine protects against flu. This is a seasonal vaccine that is repeated every year. It starts when the baby is six months old. Flu season runs from September to May so the vaccine is given accordingly.
- MMR vaccine: This vaccine protects against measles, mumps, and rubella. MMR is given in two doses. The first shot is given to the children between 12 and 15 months. And the second one follows at the age between 4 and 6 years.
- Varicella vaccine: This vaccine protects against chickenpox. It is an essential vaccine given to a healthy child. This vaccine is also a two-dose course.
- HepA: This vaccine protects against hepatitis A disease. The vaccine comprises two doses between 1 and 2 years of age.
Baby Vaccine Schedule (Age-wise vaccine dose)
Here is the list of baby vaccinations in relation with the age of the child:
- At birth- HeptaB
- 1-2 months: Hepta B second dose
- 2 months: DTap, Hib, IPV, PCV and RV vaccines
- 4 months: DTap second dose, Hib, IPV, PCV (second dose), RV (second dose),
- 6 months: DTap (third dose), Hib (third dose), PCV(third dose), RV (third dose)
- 6 months and annually: Influenza (flu)
- 6-18 months: HepB and IPV
- 12-15 months: Hib, MMR, PCV, chickenpox
- 12-23 months: HepA
- 15-18 months: DTaP
- 4-6 years: DTap, MMR, IPV, Varicella
- 11-12 years: HPV, Tdap,
This is the accurate age-wise vaccine schedule that your doctor will guide you through.
Side effects of vaccinations
Baby vaccination is about adding certain antibodies in your child’s body so sometimes your baby’s body can respond in a certain way.
There are a few reactions to certain baby vaccinations. The following are certain after-effects of a few vaccines that your child might experience.
- Fever: Some children tend to catch a fever for a day or two after the day of getting a vaccine.
- Tenderness, redness, and swelling around the skin from where the needle sits & your baby might cry in pain due to this.
- Babies can behave unsettled or sleepy.
- In rare cases, lumps get formed at the injection site. This condition requires a consultation from the doctor.
Remedies for baby vaccination side effects
Following are some home remedies that can help with the above-mentioned side effects:
- Give extra fluids to the baby.
- Do not overdress your child especially in summers.
- Put an old wet cloth on the injection site to ease the baby.
- For fever, paracetamol can be given but only if prescribed by the doctor.
What if baby vaccination is delayed?
It is highly recommended for parents to be careful about their baby immunisation schedule. But if by mistake you missed getting a dose of the vaccine, then you do not have to start the whole story again but begin from where you left. But it is best to be careful and be strict with the schedule.
A vaccine is the only way by which you can save your child from dangerous diseases. It is a serious concern and parents should not take vaccination schedules lightly. Baby vaccinations are very important to keep your child safe and healthy.