World Immunization Day: Why it’s important to get vaccinated

World Immunization Day is celebrated on 10th November every year around the world. The day is observed to make people aware about the importance of getting vaccinations against vaccine preventable diseases. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), immunization is deemed to eradicate 2-3 million deaths each year but approximately 18.7 million infants worldwide are still missing out on basic vaccines. Therefore, we need to understand the importance of getting vaccinations. Consider these points:

Vaccination can prevent you from serious health problems: Teenagers and adults who suffer from diseases like mumps may be at an increased risk of side effects of the illness such as infertility.

Vaccinations are for your healthy future and not just the childhood: Diseases like hepatitis B or tetanus for which we are vaccinated in childhood actually affect adults more than children. Moreover, diseases such as chickenpox are more harmful to adults than children.

Vaccinations can save your life: Hepatitis B attacks the liver and may lead to death. The latest HPV vaccination can prevent us from getting various forms of cancer.

Which vaccinations should one get?

Doctors suggest that teenagers must be vaccinated against the following health problems:

  • Diphtheria, Tetanus and Pertussis
  • MMR (Measles, Mumps and Rubella)
  • Hepatitis A and B
  • Meningitis
  • Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
  • Chickenpox
  • Polio
  • Influenza

Are vaccinations safe?

Vaccines may cause certain side effects but the pros always outweigh the cons. The most common side effects of vaccinations include soreness, redness, and inflammation in the area of the injection or a low-grade fever. Normally, doctors prescribe acetaminophen or ibuprofen for these side effects. Before getting a vaccine, discuss any concerns with your doctor about vaccination.

Who should not be vaccinated?

People with weakened immune system must discuss with their doctors before getting vaccinated. People who are getting chemotherapy treatment or taking medicines that compromise the immune system should refrain from getting vaccinated. Pregnant women can benefit from timely vaccinations but should consult with their doctor.

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