Human beings can be shielded from many infectious diseases. One of the ways to do this is by getting the disease and then producing antibodies against it so that future attacks do not happen. The second way is to have the bacteria introduced into the system so that the antibodies are produced and the infection does not take place. The first method is called active immunisation and the second is known as passive immunisation, and both are effective against different organisms.
When a baby is born, passive immunisation is chosen to provide protection against a number of diseases. In fact, the doctor will give you a list of shots that the child should be given and when. Immunisation is necessary for the following reasons:
- To save a child's life: Dreadful diseases that were once life-threatening are now completely under control through immunisation. Give your child these shots and save his/her life. Polio, for instance, is one such example, with incidences of paralysis and death coming down to almost nil now. Measles and whooping cough are other examples.
- Travel increases exposure: While some diseases may not be prevalent in some countries, increased travel to affected regions puts the child at risk of developing that disease. For instance, contracting measles in the Philippines is easily avoidable with the help of vaccines.
- Early protection: The recommended schedule of immunisation should be completed so that children are offered early protection when they are most vulnerable. Their immune system is yet to mature, and this puts them at a higher risk of infections. In addition to checking with the doctor, there are multiple online tools available to check which shot should be given and at what age. Ensure that your child’s immunisations are up to date. This will ensure that they don’t miss school on account of ill health and you don’t have to miss work to take care of them.
- Safe and effective: The approved lists of shots are tested extensively and are proven safe and efficacious for children. The only few side effects include minor discomfort while taking the injection and sometimes mild fever which is short-lived, but this is nothing compared to the deadly effects of the disease for which the shots are being given.
- Social responsibility: When you vaccinate your child, you extend that immunity to your family, friends, and rest of the community. This helps in controlling the spread of certain diseases, and if everybody does it religiously, a healthy community is formed.
So, go ahead and protect your child against various diseases so that he/she can lead a healthy, happy, disease-free life.