7 Common Vaccines That Make Your Child Immune To Diseases


Image : Shutterstock

Every child gets sick from time to time. Certain common childhood illnesses are just a part of growing up, and catching them actually helps to boost your child’s immune system. While most illnesses come and go, there are some that deserve special attention from parents. As a parent you must be worried about your baby’s health and may be looking for useful information so that you can keep your child hale and hearty.

Most Common Childhood Diseases And Vaccines:

Here is a list of common childhood diseases that your child may suffer from in the initial years:

1. Chickenpox:

An infectious, highly contagious disease in which the child develops dozens to hundreds of small, itchy and fluid-filled blisters.

a. Symptoms:

  • Slight fever may be present before a rash develops.
  • Rash usually first appears on body, face and scalp. It then spreads to limbs.
  • Rash begins as small, red, flat spots that develop into itchy fluid-filled blisters.
  • After the blister breaks, open sores will
    crust over to form dry brown scabs.

b. How To Help Your Child?

  • Bathe you child in cool or lukewarm water every 3 to 4 hours for the first few days.
  • Pat (don’t rub) the body dry.
  • Put calamine lotion on itchy areas (but don’t use it on the face, especially near the eyes).
  • Serve foods that are cold, soft and bland. Avoid feeding your child anything highly acidic or especially salty, like orange juice.
  • Ask your doctor about pain-relieving creams to apply to sores in the genital areas.
  • Consult your child’s doctor and give acetaminophen regularly to help relieve pain if your child has mouth blisters.
  • Discourage your child from scratching. This can be difficult so consider putting mittens or socks on your child’s hand to prevent scratching during sleep. Trim your child’s fingernails and keep them clean to avoid infections. Distractions such as TV are good for taking the mind off the itching.

c. Vaccination:

There is a vaccine against Chickenpox called Varicella which is given to kids when they are between 12 and 15 months old. Second dose is given between 4 to 6 years of age.

2. Measles (Rubella):

It is highly infectious and spreads when a person with measles sneezes or coughs. The illness usually lasts about a week.

a. Symptoms:

  • Fever, cough, runny nose and watery inflamed eyes.
  • Small red spots with white or bluish white centres in the mouth.
  • Dusky red, blotchy rash that begins on the face and spreads all over the body.
  • Rash begins on 3rd to 7th day of illness and lasts for 4 to 7 days.

b. How To Help Your Child?

  • Make sure your child gets plenty of rest and plenty to drink (warm drinks will ease the cough).
  • Consult your child’s doctor and give medication to relieve the discomfort and fever.
  • Put Vaseline around their lips to protect the skin.
  • If your child’s eyelids are crusty, gently wash them with warm water.
  • If your child is having trouble breathing and/or coughing a lot or seems drowsy, see your doctor urgently.

c. Vaccination:

The MMR vaccine is part of the routine childhood vaccination program. First dose is given when your child is between 12-13 months old and second dose is given before school starts, usually between three and five years old.

[ Read: Symptoms Of Rubella In Children ]

3. Mumps:

Mumps is a contagious viral infection that is common among children. It is most recognizable by the painful swellings at the side of the face under the ears. Mumps is spread through direct or indirect contact with contaminated air or infected toys or objects. In order to prevent it from spreading, instruct your child to wash hands with soap, use and dispose tissues after sneezing and avoid school for at least five days.

a. Symptoms:

  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Swollen and painful salivary glands.

b. Vaccination:

You can protect your child against mumps by making sure they are given the combined MMR vaccine. Your child should be given one dose around 12-13 months of age and a second booster dose before school age. Once both doses are given, the vaccine provides 95% protection against mumps.

4. Polio:

Polio is an infectious disease caused by a virus that lives in infected child’s throat and intestines.

a. Symptoms:

  • A very mild form that produces cold-like symptoms. This is known as abortive polio.
  • A type associated with aseptic meningitis, known as non-paralytic polio.
  • The most severe type is known as paralytic polio. It can cause paralysis or death.

b. Vaccination:

Two polio vaccines are as follows:

  • The Sabin Oral Polio Vaccine is an attenuated live virus version. It helps in providing intestinal immunity and protecting against natural infection.
  • The Injectable Salk inactivated polio Vaccine (IPV) is a killed cell version. It protects against stool transfer of live virus and paralytic disease.
  • One Vaccination Strategy suggests giving the first two doses of polio vaccine in the inject-able form and the third dose in oral form.