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14 Diseases You Almost Forgot About Thanks to Vaccines

​1.   Diphtheria

Most of us only know diphtheria as an obscure disease from long ago, thanks to the diphtheria vaccine babies get. This vaccine, called DTaP, provides protection against diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis (whooping cough). While preventable, diphtheria does still exist and causes a thick covering in the back of the nose or throat. It can lead to difficulty breathing, heart failure, paralysis, and even death. Make sure to vaccinate to help keep this dangerous infection from your kids.

Doctors recommend that your child get five doses of the DTaP vaccine for best protection. Your child will need one dose at each of the following ages: 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, 15 through 18 months, and 4 through 6 years.

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2.   Chicken Pox

Chickenpox is a disease that causes an itchy rash of blisters and a fever. A person with chickenpox may have a lot of blisters—as many as 500 all over their body. Chickenpox can be serious and even life-threatening, especially in babies, adults, and people with weakened immune systems. Even healthy children can get really sick. Vaccinating kids at an early age is especially important to keep your children healthy.

Doctors recommend that your child get two doses of the chickenpox shot for best protection. Your child will need one dose at each of the following ages: 12 through 15 months and 4 through 6 years.

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3.   Mumps

Mumps is best known for the puffy cheeks and swollen jaw that it causes. This is due to swelling of the salivary glands. Other symptoms include fever, head and muscle aches, and tiredness. Mumps is a contagious disease and there is no treatment. Mumps is still a threat today—every year, people in the United States get mumps. In recent years, mumps outbreaks have occurred in settings where there was close, extended contact with infected people, such as being in the same classroom or playing on the same sports team. The MMR vaccine protects you and your family against mumps, measles, and rubella.

Doctors recommend that your child get two doses of the MMR shot for best protection. Your child will need one dose at each of the following ages: 12 through 15 months and 4 through 6 years.

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4.   Rotavirus

Rotavirus is contagious and can cause severe watery diarrhea, often with vomiting, fever, and abdominal pain, mostly in infants and young children. Children can become severely dehydrated from the disease and need to be hospitalized. If a dehydrated child does not get needed care, they could die. Rotavirus is one of the first vaccines an infant can get; it's the best way to protect your child from rotavirus disease.

Doctors recommend that your child get two or three doses of the vaccine (depending on the brand) for best protection. Babies should get the first dose at 2 months of age. For both vaccines, babies get a second dose at 4 months. They'll need a third dose at 6 months if they're getting the RotaTeq vaccine.

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5.   Pneumococcal Disease

This disease is caused by bacteria called Streptococcus pneumoniae. It causes ear infections, sinus infections, pneumonia, and even meningitis, making it very dangerous for children. The germs can invade parts of the body—like the brain or spinal cord—that are normally free from germs. Make sure you keep kids safe from this dangerous disease by vaccinating.

Doctors recommend that your child get four doses of the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (also called PCV13) for best protection. Your child will need one dose at each of the following ages: 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, and between 12 and 15 months.

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6.   Whooping Cough (Pertussis)

Whooping cough, or pertussis, is a highly contagious disease that can be deadly for babies. Whooping cough is known for uncontrollable, violent coughing which often makes it hard to breathe. Its "whooping" name comes from the sharp breath intake right after the cough, but in babies this disease also can cause life-threatening pauses in breathing with no sound at all. Whooping cough is especially dangerous to babies who are too young to be vaccinated themselves. Mothers should get the whooping cough vaccine while pregnant to pass some protection to their babies before birth. It is very important for your baby to get the whooping cough vaccine on time so he can start building his own protection against the disease. Since 2010, we have seen between 10,000 and 50,000 cases of whooping cough each year in the United States, with cases reported in every state.

The DTaP vaccine provides protection against whooping cough, diphtheria and tetanus. Doctors recommend that your child get five doses of the DTaP shot for best protection. Your child will need one dose at each of the following ages: 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, 15 through 18 months, and 4 through 6 years.

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7.   Measles

Did you know your child can get measles by being in a room where a person with measles has been, even up to two hours after that person has left? Measles is very contagious, and it can be serious, especially for young children. Because measles is common in other parts of the world, unvaccinated people can get measles while traveling and bring it into the United States. Anyone who is not protected is at risk, so make sure to stay up to date on your child's vaccines to minimize the risk of coming into contact with an imported case.

Doctors recommend that your child get two doses of the MMR shot for best protection. Your child will need one dose at each of the following ages: 12 through 15 months and 4 through 6 years.

Infants 6 to 11 months old should have one dose of the MMR shot before traveling abroad. Infants vaccinated before 12 months of age should be revaccinated on or after their first birthday with two doses, each dose separated by at least 28 days.

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8.   Hib

Hib (or its official name, Haemophilus influenzae type b) isn't as well-known as some of the other diseases, thanks to vaccines. Hib can do some serious damage to our kids' immune systems, and cause brain damage, hearing loss, or even death. Hib mostly affects kids under five years old. Before the vaccine, over 20,000 kids were infected each year. That's about 400 yellow school busses worth of kids! Of these kids, one in five suffered brain damage or became deaf. Even with treatment, one out of 20 with Hib meningitis dies. Get your child vaccinated to help them beat the odds!

Doctors recommend that your child get four doses of the Hib vaccine for best protection. Your child will need one dose at each of the following ages: 2 months, 4 months, 6 months (for some brands), and 12 through 15 months.

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9.   Rubella

Rubella is spread by coughing and sneezing. It is especially dangerous for a pregnant woman and her developing baby. If an unvaccinated pregnant woman gets infected with rubella, she can have a miscarriage or her baby could die just after birth. Also, she can pass the disease to her developing baby who can develop serious birth defects. Make sure you and your child are protected from rubella by getting vaccinated on schedule.

Doctors recommend that your child get two doses of the MMR vaccine for best protection. Your child will need one dose at each of the following ages: 12 through 15 months and 4 through 6 years.

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10.  Hepatitis A

The Hepatitis A vaccine was developed in 1995 and since then has cut the number of cases dramatically in the United States. Hepatitis A is a contagious liver disease and is transmitted through person-to-person contact or through contaminated food and water. Vaccinating against hepatitis A is a good way to help your baby stay Hep A-free and healthy!

Doctors recommend that your child get two doses of the hepatitis A shot for best protection. Your child should get the first dose at 12 through 23 months and the second dose 6 to 18 months after the first.

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11.  Hepatitis B

Did you know more than 780,000 people per year die from complications to Hepatitis B? Hepatitis B is transmitted through bodily fluids, but it can live for seven days without a host! It's especially dangerous for babies, since many moms with hepatitis B don't even know they are infected. About nine out of every 10 infants who contract it from their mothers become chronically infected, which is why babies get the vaccine before they even leave the hospital. Make sure to avoid hepatitis B by getting vaccinated (you and your baby)!

Doctors recommend that your child get three doses of the Hep B shot for best protection. Typically, your child will need one dose at each of the following ages: birth, 1 to 2 months, and 6 months.

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12.  The Flu (Influenza)

Flu is a respiratory illness caused by infection of the nose, throat, and lungs with influenza viruses. The flu can affect people differently based on their immune system, age, and health. Did you know that the flu can be dangerous for children of any age? Flu symptoms in children can include coughing, fever, aches, fatigue, vomiting, and diarrhea. Not to mention, every year in the United States, otherwise healthy children are hospitalized or die from flu complications. In fact, an average of 20,000 children younger than 5 years old are hospitalized each year from flu-related complications, like pneumonia. It's important to know that children younger than 6 months are at an especially high risk of serious flu illness, but are too young to get a flu vaccine. The best way to protect babies against the flu is for the mother to get a flu vaccine during pregnancy and for all caregivers and close contacts of the infant to be vaccinated. Everyone 6 months and older should get a flu vaccine every year—protect yourself and your loved ones.

Doctors recommend that your child get the flu vaccine every year starting when they are 6 months old. Some children 6 months through 8 years of age may need 2 doses for best protection.

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13.  Tetanus

Tetanus causes painful muscle stiffness and lockjaw and can be fatal. Parents used to warn kids about tetanus every time we scratched, scraped, poked, or sliced ourselves on something metal. Nowadays, the tetanus vaccine is part of a disease-fighting vaccine called DTaP, which provides protection against tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (whooping cough).

Doctors recommend that your child get five doses of the DTaP shot for best protection. Your child will need one dose at each of the following ages: 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, 15 through 18 months, and 4 through 6 years.

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14.  Polio

Polio is a crippling and potentially deadly infectious disease that is caused by poliovirus. The virus spreads from person to person and can invade an infected person's brain and spinal cord, causing paralysis. Polio was eliminated in the United States with vaccination, and continued use of polio vaccine has kept this country polio-free. But, polio is still a threat in some other countries. Making sure that infants and children are vaccinated is the best way to prevent polio from returning. Make sure your baby is protected with the polio vaccine.

Doctors recommend that your child get four doses of the polio vaccine (also called IPV) for best protection. Your child will need one dose at each of the fol​​lowing ages: 2 months, 4 months, 6 through 18 months, and 4 through 6 years.

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Additional Information from HealthyChildren.org:

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Last Updated
8/12/2016
Source
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
The information contained on this Web site should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your pediatrician. There may be variations in treatment that your pediatrician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances.
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