Has your child received the immunizations he or she needs to stay healthy? The Clearwater and Westchase, FL, pediatricians at Clearwater and Westchase Pediatric Care explain why vaccinating your child against common illnesses is important.
Immunizations protect your child and your community
Immunizations prevent your child from catching a range of communicable diseases, including whooping cough, measles, meningitis and chicken pox. Although chicken pox and whooping cough may seem like minor childhood illnesses, they can have serious consequences and may even result in death, in some cases.
You probably read about an increase in whooping cough cases in Florida and other parts of the country this past winter. It's only in the past few years, that whooping cough has become a problem, due to a reluctance by some parents to fully vaccinate their children against illnesses or even vaccinate them at all. Unfortunately, whooping cough can be a very serious illness, particularly in young children and babies. Coughing may be so severe and constant that children may not be able to breathe, eat or drink.
Vaccines were essential in decreasing or eradicating many serious childhood disease in the past, including smallpox and polio. Although some children should not have immunizations due to certain medical conditions, most children can be safely immunized. It was once believed that vaccines were the cause of autism, but research studies have found no link between autism and immunizations, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Immunizing your child not only protects him or her, but also protects other people in your family and community. When the majority of people are vaccinated, they can't contract diseases and pass them along to babies and young children who aren't old enough to receive vaccines yet. Mass immunizations also protect older people who have weak immune systems and others who have diseases that compromise their immune systems.
Most children who receive vaccinations in our Westchase or Clearwater office only experience mild, temporary side effects from vaccines, such as a low fever or irritability. These side effects only last a day or two, but the benefits of immunizations last many years.
Protect your child's health by ensuring that he or she receives recommended immunizations. Make an appointment with Westchase Pediatric Care in Westchase by calling (813) 818-1542 or Clearwater Pediatric Care in Clearwater by calling (727) 461-1543.