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Vaccinations stimulate the body's immune system to protect individuals to a specific diseases. Some of the world's most deadly and debilitating diseases, such as polio and diphtheria, are becoming rare due to vaccinations and small pox has been completely eradicated.
Vaccines contain the same antigens that cause diseases. The antigens in vaccines are either killed or weakened so they can't cause disease, but are still strong enough to initiate the body's immune response. The body creates antibodies which learn how to fight the disease and programs the immune system to fight off the disease if it is ever exposed to it in the future, creating the immunity.
Many vaccinations are given to infants to protect them from a young age, before they ever have the opportunity to become exposed to the disease. But not all vaccinations are given at the same age. Some vaccinations aren't given until the teen years or adulthood and others require periodic booster doses after a certain amount of time has passed. In the case of the flu vaccine, it needs to be given every year to give you protection against the flu. This is because the flu virus has many different strains and evolves quickly so it is constantly mutating into new strains which are unrecognizable to the immune system.
Below, we have provided the vaccination schedule for infants and children, teens and preteens, and adults. We have also provided you with links to additional information recommended vaccines and schedules.
Pneumococcal Infection and Vaccine
Pneumococcus has learned how to avoid being killed by some of the antibiotics that doctors have commonly used against it. Fortunately, there is a vaccine.
Influenza and the Flu Vaccine
Flu vaccine prevents influenza nine times out of ten, and makes it milder the rest of the time. It reduces days lost from work by 50%. There are very few reasons why people older than age 6 months should not get flu vaccine.
CDC Infant and Child Vaccine Schedule
The recommended immunization schedule is designed to protect infants and children early in life, when they are most vulnerable and before they are exposed to potentially life-threatening diseases.
CDC Teen and Preteen Vaccine Schedule
The recommended immunization schedules list the age or age range when each vaccine or series of shots is recommended. If your preteen or teen (age 7 through 18 years old) has missed any shots, check with the doctor about getting back on track.
CDC Adult Vaccine Schedule
You never outgrow the need for vaccines. The specific immunizations you need as an adult are determined by factors such as your age, lifestyle, high-risk conditions, type and locations of travel, and previous immunizations.
American Cancer Society/HPV Vaccine Facts and Fears
Vaccines to prevent human papilloma virus (HPV) infections are safe and effective. They can protect girls and boys from getting several different types of cancer when they get older.
cdc.gov/Vaccine Safety for Care Givers
When making health decisions for your family, it’s important to have the facts. This page provides places to find trustworthy, science-based information about the safety of vaccines.
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