Monday, June 19, 2006

Day 119 - Four Month Vaccination

Today's Tip - Get your baby vaccinated at his four-month appointment

It's nearly time for the four month appointment. Along with checking your babies physical development (height, weight, head circumfrance), ears, throat, eyes, and overall health, your pediatrician should recommend vaccinations for your infant. Your doctor will probably also recommend that your baby get on some type of solid foods over the next couple months.

He should be due for vaccines against:

  • Diptheria

  • Tetanus

  • Pertussis

  • Haemophilus Influenzae Type B (Hib)

  • Polio

  • Pneumococcal Conjugate (PCV7)

While he's getting the shots be sure to stay near, he'll need comforting. Afterwords, you should expect your baby to be more tired and fussy than usual, maybe for a day or two. A fever is also a possibility, but if he gets above 102.5, call your pediatrician. The injection site might also be red and irritated, but if it becomes bumped up, call your pediatrician.

Give your baby infant tylenol before the appointment and it may make the shots easier to take. After the shots, give him the recommended dosage of infant tylenol every four hours if he develops a fever.

DIPHTHERIA - Diphtheria is a very serious disease. It can make a person unable to breathe or cause paralysis (unable to move parts of the body) or heart failure. About one in every 10 people who get diphtheria die from it.

TETANUS - Tetanus (lockjaw) can occur after a cut or wound lets the germ into the body. Tetanus makes the person unable to open his or her mouth or swallow,and causes serious muscle spasms. In the United States, tetanus kills three out of every 10 people who get the disease. Those who survive have long hospital stays.

PERTUSSIS - Pertussis (whooping cough) may be mild or serious and is easily passed from person to person. Pertussis can cause spells of coughing and choking that make it hard to eat, drink or breathe. The coughing can last for weeks. Pertussis is most dangerous to babies under one year old. Babies with pertussis are so sick that nearly half must go to the hospital. About one baby in 100 with pertussis either dies or is left with permanent brain injury. Serious illness is less likely in older children and adults.

HAEMOPHILUS INFLUENZAETYPE B (Hib) - Hib disease is caused by an infection spread by coughing, sneezing or close contact. Hib disease can cause a swelling of the brain that can lead to developmental disability, hearing loss, weakened sight, or speech problems. Before a Hib vaccine was available, Hib infected one of every 200 children before age five. It is most dangerous for babies under age one.

POLIO - Polio is a very dangerous disease. Some children and adults who get a serious case of polio become paralyzed (unable to move parts of their bodies). Sometimes polio may make it difficult to breathe without the help of a machine. In some cases, it can even cause death.

PNEUMOCOCCAL CONJUGATE(PCV7) - Pneumococcal disease is a serious illness that is responsible for about 200 deaths each year among children under five years old. Children under two years old are at highest risk for serious disease. It is the leading cause of bacterial meningitis in the United States. Meningitis is an infection of the covering of the brain.

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