Why follow a vaccine schedule?

There are reasons why your pediatrician wants you to immunize your children on time. Here’s why.

Father Measuring Temperature Of His Son

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The development of vaccines has led to the reduction of serious childhood infections, many of which are potentially life threatening. Despite the evidence for safety, there has been an increasing trend in requests for alternate or delayed immunization schedules. Unfortunately, vaccine-preventable disease and death still exist and can be passed on to people who are not protected by vaccines.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), along with doctors, researchers and other public health experts, have worked extensively to provide a safe vaccine schedule for your child. Alternative schedules have not been researched or tested and can leave your child unprotected and at risk for contracting vaccine preventable diseases.

Vaccines and the Immune System

After there is an exposure to a specific antigen (for example – chickenpox), your immune system will develop antibodies to fight the disease.

So why vaccinate if we can develop immunity from the disease? Developing immunity to diseases takes time, and not all children may be strong enough to fight the disease.

Providing vaccines that contain the same disease antigen allows the child to develop immunity to that disease, without becoming sick or developing complications from the disease. The antigens found in vaccines are killed or weakened. That means they are not able to cause disease but they are able to mount an immune response.

There have been concerns that vaccines overwhelm a child’s immune system, but the evidence shows otherwise. Babies’ immune systems are not fully mature, but they are strong enough to handle exposure to vaccines. They are able to handle hundreds of exposures from day to day activities!

The recommended schedules from the CDC and American Academy of Pediatrics are safe and supported by evidence-based medicine.

Common questions about childhood vaccines

  1. But what if my child is missing some vaccines?
    This is something that pediatricians deal with on a daily basis and can easily discuss with you. There are specific guidelines implemented by the CDC to help get your child safely back on track with their immunizations.
  2. Where do I find the vaccine schedules?
    Schedules can be found on the CDC website or here on ADClinic.com.

Still have questions?

Doctors, nurses and health care professionals encourage our patients to read and ask questions when it comes to their child’s health and would love to talk to you about any concerns or questions you may have.

But be wary of the hundreds of websites available to “help” you decided what is safe. Search long enough and you’ll find some “research” is very flawed and simply wrong (and quite scary). Reliable sources used daily by pediatricians include CDC.gov, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and HealthyChildren.org.