Immunizations, or vaccinations, offer significant protection from infectious diseases and are an essential part of any preventive health care plan. Although vaccinations are often thought of as a component of childhood health care, adults can benefit from routine immunization, too. The first-rate team of family doctors at HT Family Physicians, located in the cities of Stockton and Lodi, California, offer personalized immunization schedules to help ensure patients of all ages stay up-to-date on their vaccinations. If you’re in the San Joaquin area, call or book an appointment online today.
Staying up-to-date on your immunizations provides two major health benefits: It protects you from the disease you’re being vaccinated against, and helps protect others in your community, too.
That’s because being vaccinated against an infectious disease means you have a relatively low risk of carrying or contracting that illness, which in turn protects the people you come in contact with each day.
Plus, when a significant portion of your community is vaccinated against a specific contagious disease, most of the people who live there, whether they’re vaccinated or not, have some degree of protection simply because there’s little chance of an outbreak.
This so-called “community immunity” is a major benefit to those who can’t receive certain immunizations, including young infants, pregnant women, and people with compromised immune systems.
All healthy babies who are able to receive immunizations should generally be vaccinated against 14 serious and preventable illnesses by the time they’re two years old. They include:
Getting all the recommended immunizations is one of the best ways you can protect your child against many of the most debilitating or potentially fatal contagious diseases. Many of the illnesses — including polio and measles -- that today’s vaccines help to prevent -- injured or killed countless children in the past.
It’s recommended that all adults stay current with the Tdap vaccination, which covers tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis, in addition to getting an annual flu shot.
Some immunizations are specifically developed to prevent diseases that only affect adults, and are generally administered during adulthood. The shingles vaccine is one example; it’s intended for adults aged 60 and older.
Adults who plan to travel to a region that has one or more preventable contagious diseases that don’t exist at home should consider region-specific immunizations.
Some adults may also need immunizations to help boost the immunity they attained from long-ago childhood vaccinations.
Vaccines work by teaching the body how to defend itself when a virus or bacteria invade it. Although some patients worry about safety, vaccines only are made available after long and rigorous scientific review.
Although immunizations may cause you or your child some mild discomfort, these short-lived symptoms are negligible compared to the potential trauma of the diseases they help prevent.