Immunisation is a way of protecting against serious diseases. Once we have been immunised our bodies are able to fight those diseases more effectively if we come into contact with them. Vaccines contain a small part of the bacterium or virus that causes a disease or tiny amount of chemicals that the bacterium produces. Vaccines work by causing the body’s immune system to make antibodies. If your child comes into contact with the infection, the antibodies will recognise it and be ready to protect him/her. Only because of vaccines many diseases have been eradicated from many parts of the world such as small pox and polio.
Relax! Vaccines are safe!
Before a vaccine is licensed, its safety and effectiveness have to be thoroughly tested. After they have been licensed, the safety of vaccines continues to be monitored. Any rare side effects can then be assessed further. Research from around the world shows that immunisation is the safest way to protect your child’s health.
How to calm down the baby?
While going for immunisations, kids are equally apprehensive as adults are. My request to all parents is that never lie to a child who can understand what vaccinations are. This maintains a rapport between the child and a Paediatrician which goes a long way. There are various ways to amuse a child noticeably by using rattles or certain colourful toys. One can also give sucrose while vaccinating a child.
How are vaccines administered?
Immunisations are given by 4 routes:
- Most of the vaccines are given by intramuscular route and the preferred sites are deltoid, anterolateral part of thigh.
- The other route is subcutaneous route which is in the skin, vaccines given by this route is MMR, Chicken pox.
- The next route which is being used is oral route, Rotavirus and oral polio are the ones given by this route.
- The least commonly utilised route is intra dermal and the only vaccine given by this route is BCG vaccine.