Infant Vaccinations: Addressing Common Concerns

Infant children require frequent checkups at the doctor during the first few months of life. The pediatrician will check to make sure your child is growing well, assess whether a baby is meeting milestones correctly, and look for any developmental delays. Your baby will also receive vaccines during well-baby visits to help protect them from dangerous illnesses. 

Some parents can feel uncomfortable about vaccinations, and it is common to have concerns. Here are some common concerns that many parents may have about infant immunizations.

1. Is it better to space out vaccines so that a baby doesn't get too much at once?

Parents often look at the amount of medicine in vaccines and wonder if it wouldn't be better to give those medicines in more spaced-out doses. However, vaccines are formulated to give several strains of illness in one needle, which reduces the trauma of multiple injections spaced out over the course of several weeks. When doses are separated, babies get poked many more times. It also easier to get mixed up with the schedule, resulting in missed doses or too long of a time between doses for the vaccine to be as effective as possible.

Also, it is important to give babies as much time as protected as possible. Delaying vaccines increases the risk that they could contract a painful or dangerous illness. Some illnesses, like measles, are rare. Others, like whooping cough, are more common, and they can be very hard on young babies. 

2. Do babies get sick after receiving vaccinations?

Each vaccine can have side effects. Usually, these side effects are rare. Your baby might be fussy after receiving a vaccine. They could develop a fever or slight swelling at the injection site. These reactions show that your baby's immune system is learning to fight the illness, and these responses are normal.

3. Is natural immunity better than a vaccine?

Some vaccines are newer than others. For example, the polio vaccine is older, while the vaccine against chickenpox was a relatively recent addition to the vaccine schedule. Many parents might remember having chickenpox as a child, and they also remember being told that you only get it once because your body develops immunity. 

Your body does learn to fight some disease, but a vaccine is safer than the disease itself. The vaccine for measles, for instance, trains your body to fight measles without the danger that measles brings. Some diseases are less scary than polio or measles, but even chickenpox can develop into a very serious illness for children, and the vaccine is a simple and effective prevention method to avoid any complications. 

For more information, contact a clinic like Kitsap Children's Clinic LLP.