Importance of Immunizations

Importance of Immunizations

Children under the age of 5 are susceptible to disease if they are not vaccinated because their immune system is not protected and cannot fight infections. One of the main ways to help a child fight against disease is to immunize your child beginning by age 2. Immunizations have helped to make certain diseases, like polio, rare but it is still important to keep vaccinating against diseases to keep them from returning and becoming widespread. If the protection given by immunizations is taken away, more and more people would be infected and all the progress to stop a disease would be undone.

Immunizing individual children also helps to protect the health of our community, especially those people who are not immunized. People who are not immunized include those who are too young to be vaccinated, those who cannot be vaccinated for medical reasons, and those who cannot make an adequate response to vaccination.

Vaccines, like any other medicine, have possible side effects. Some people may not respond to the vaccine and may still get the illness the vaccine was supposed to protect them against.  Some people experience mild reactions such as fever or soreness at the injection site. It is very rare that a person will experience severe allergic reactions; however, if there are known health problems or known allergies it is best for the person to speak to their physician prior to getting immunized.

If your child is on SoonerCare they can receive all necessary childhood vaccines for free. Make an appointment with your child’s doctor to speak about vaccines and when they are needed. If your child is not currently enrolled in SoonerCare, log on to www.mysoonercare.org to see if he/she qualifies to receive health benefits.

For more information call the Child Health Line 405-522-7188.