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The Importance of Immunizations (Vaccines) for Children

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Jul 7, 2024.

Why is immunization important?

Immunization helps your child become immune (protected) from diseases caused by bacteria or viruses. It also helps protect others around him or her. Without immunization, the only way to become immune is to get the disease. This is dangerous because your child can develop medical problems from the disease that may be long-term or difficult to treat. Immunization helps control diseases and prevents them from coming back after they are controlled.

Recommended Immunization Schedule 2022

How is immunization done?

Inactivated (killed) or weakened (live) forms of viruses or bacteria may be used. Pieces of protein from a virus may be used to teach your child's immune system to recognize the virus. Vaccines are usually given as shots or nasal sprays. The vaccine will cause your child's body to produce antibodies. Antibodies are part of your child's immune system. Your child's immune system will recognize the virus or bacteria if he or she is exposed again. The system will produce the same antibodies to prevent the disease.

Which diseases can be prevented by vaccines?

What do I need to know about immunization?

Treatment options

The following list of medications are related to or used in the treatment of this condition.

What are the risks of immunization?

Vaccines may cause severe allergic reactions in some people. Tell your child's healthcare provider if your child has any allergies or a weakened immune system. Your child may not be able to get live vaccines if his or her immune system is weakened. Rarely, vaccines may cause serious injury or death.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your child's care. Learn about your child's health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your child's healthcare providers to decide what care you want for your child. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.