More than 600,000 adults die from vaccine preventable illnesses each year. As a caregiver, it is vital to know what vaccines you need as it could prevent both you and your newborn from becoming very sick.
Measles-Mumps-Rubella (MMR) Vaccine
Early prevention is the only chance of beating these killers. Measles, mumps, and German measles (rubella) are viruses than can cause miscarriages and birth defects. Measles is very contagious and can quickly spread throughout an entire community. An example of the devastation not vaccinating your child was shown in the outbreak of measles at a Disneyland Resort in 2015 when five employees were confirmed to have the measles. That year there were several dozen reported cases of measles in Oregon, California, Utah, Colorado, Washington, and even Mexico that were all tied to an outbreak that originated at the Disneyland Resort and the Disney's California Adventure Park.
Tetanus, Diphtheria, and Pertussis Vaccines
Tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis are also very serious diseases. Receiving a Tdap vaccine can prevent all three of these and should be given to pregnant mothers to prevent pertussis in the newborn baby. Tetanus (lockjaw) is rare but it can lead to muscle stiffness and tightening over your entire body. Tetanus kills approximately one out of ten people who are infected, even after medical treatment.
Pertussis (whooping cough) can cause difficulty in breathing, severe coughing spells, vomiting and disrupted sleep. In 2014, 32,971 cases of the whooping cough were reported to the CDC, which was a 15 percent increase on the number of cases reported in 2013. In 2013, there were 20 whooping cough related deaths reported to the CDC. This is the highest number of deaths related to this condition reported since the year 1955.
Diphtheria is also rare in the United States but can cause heart failure, breathing problems, and death. Diphtheria and pertussis are spread from one person to another through body secretions from coughing or sneezing. Tetanus is caught from scratches, wounds, or cuts.
Flu shots can be taken when you are pregnant; and it could save your baby's life. Serious complications may happen if the mother gets the flu before the baby is born. For example, pregnant women who get the flu are more likely to experience preterm labor, which is labor before 37 weeks. The fever from the flue can cause the baby to be born with birth defects too. If you have the shot, the baby will receive some antibodies from you. This helps protect your child. Babies cannot be vaccinated until the age of 6 months.
Chickenpox is caused by the varicella-zoster virus and is easily spread. It is extremely contagious, and can be transmitted from the infected person by sharing drinks/food, coughing or sneezing. Close contact is risky because you may not know you have it since it may be 2 to 3 days before a rash appears.
For all the above reasons, be cautious and do not be afraid to ask your baby's pediatrician about these vaccines. Contact a practice, such as Northeast Wyoming Pediatric Associates Pc, for more information.