In the hustle and bustle of the back-to-school season, there are several things that you have on your list of things to do before school starts. This list should include making sure that your children’s vaccinations are up-to-date. Public schools require students to get immunizations to minimize the risk of serious diseases. If your children have not received the required round of vaccinations, they may not be able to attend school until they have been immunized.
Why Should You Vaccinate Your Children?
Vaccinations help protect your children from serious and life-threatening diseases, including polio, chicken pox and the measles. When you vaccinate your children, you are also protecting other members of the community, and you are helping to prevent a widespread outbreak. This is why schools require students to be immunized before they attend classes. While some parents are concerned about the dangers of vaccinating their children, doctors warn that your children will face higher and more dangerous risks if you do not vaccinate them. That is why the CDC has created a schedule that will allow children to get the vaccinations they need to stay protected.
Children receive their first set of immunizations when they are newborns, and they will continue to receive these vaccinations as they grow. Young children up to the age of 6 need 14 vaccinations to protect them from diseases, including:
- Hepatitis B
Your children’s pediatrician can tell you which immunizations your children will need before they head to school or day care. Your children will also need to get a flu shot each year if they are over 6 months of age. Since young children often have to receive several vaccinations at once, you can talk to your children’s pediatrician in Katy about spacing them out so that your kids are more comfortable.
Children Ages 7 Through 18
Older children still need to receive vaccines in order to keep their immune systems strong and protected. In addition to some of the vaccines that they previously received, they will need the HPV vaccine. This immunization protects against infections that have been proven to increase the risk of cancer. They may also need to get immunized against whooping cough, diphtheria and tetanus, and they will need the meningococcal conjugate vaccine before they enter high school or go off to college.
If Your Children Miss Vaccinations
There is a fairly strict schedule for children’s vaccinations, and it can be difficult to catch up if your children have fallen behind. However, there are catch-up vaccinations that will help protect them from diseases. These include polio, varicella, MMR and hepatitis B vaccines, and they can get vaccines for hepatitis A, PPV and the flu.
While your list of back-to-school tasks may seem lengthy, it is very important to make sure that your children have had their necessary vaccines before school starts. If you aren’t sure, you can call the school office or your children’s pediatrician.