Immunization Checklist—Important Vaccines for Kids and Adults

As children, many of us were vaccinated against various diseases with little concern. Today, however, we frequently hear of parents choosing to forego vaccinations out of concern about the possible side effects. The reality, however, is that while there may be slight side effects from the vaccine, such as soreness where the shot was administered, these are mild in comparison to the virus or disease the immunizations protect against. It’s important to get your child vaccinated and to keep vaccinations current through adulthood.

The first vaccination an infant receives is for Hepatitis B, and side effects from this injection are rare. This vaccine is given so early because people who are infected at birth or during childhood are at a high risk for developing chronic HBV infection, a deadly condition. Further, the HBV infection produces no symptoms in infants or children, which means that it can be unknowingly spread. It’s also believed that such an early vaccination will last for decades, potentially protecting the child through adulthood.

Additional vaccines that should be administered between ages 0 to 6 include:

  • Rotavirus vaccine
  • Diphtheria and tetanus toxoids and acellular pertussis vaccine (DTaP)
  • Haemophilus influenzae type b conjugate vaccine (Hib)
  • Pneumococcal vaccine
  • Inactivated poliovirus vaccine (IPV)
  • Influenza vaccine
  • Measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine (MMR)
  • Varicella vaccine
  • Hepatitis A vaccine (HepA)
  • Meningococcal vaccine

One relatively new vaccine that is especially important for young women today is the human papilloma virus (HPV) vaccine. The vaccine prevents the most common of the 40 types of genital HPV that cause cervical cancer and genital warts.

Some other vaccines that are important for children, ages 7 to 18, include:

  • Tetanus, diphtheria, and acellular pertussis (Td/Tdap) vaccination
  • Meningococcal conjugate vaccine (MCV4)
  • Pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPSV)
  • Influenza vaccine
  • HepA
  • HepB
  • IPV
  • MMR
  • Varicella vaccine

The shingles vaccine can be important for adults. Shingles is a condition that typically occurs in people over age 50. This painful rash usually appears on just one side of the face or body, lasting on average between two and four weeks. While the main symptom is just pain, the pain is often severe and debilitating. The brief, mild soreness that occasionally results at the injection site is worth the discomfort to avoid getting shingles.

Other vaccines that should be kept current between the ages of 19 and 65 include:

  • Tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis (Td/Tdap)
  • HPV (if it hasn’t been administered)
  • Varicella3
  • MMR
  • Influenza
  • HepA
  • HepB
  • Pneumococcal (polysaccharide)
  • Meningococcal

If you have questions about the vaccines you or your family members need, be sure to talk to your doctor. At Denton Regional Medical Center, we can help. Just call (940) 898-0629 for a physician referral.

 

Sources:

Shingles Vaccine (CDC)

Immunization Charts (WebMD)

HPV Vaccination (CDC)

 

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