Infectious Diseases

Vaccines for Children and Adults

FAQs About Vaccines

Vaccines are one of the easiest ways to prevent life-threatening illnesses. They're so effective at providing immunity that we barely hear about some diseases anymore. Smallpox, for example, has been completely eradicated, and cases for once very common ailments like polio, diphtheria, and measles are in decline. 

As an educated consumer and an advocate for your own health, we expect you to have questions about these life-saving immunizations, especially since the recent anti-vaccination movement raised several concerns.

Here we address a few of the most common questions we had that you probably have too, including safety issues, money-saving tips, and more. Take a look below!

Your Yearly Flu Shot

You might not think of your yearly flu shot as a vaccine. You don't have to get other vaccines every year, and a cold isn't exactly a life-threatening illness like polio or meningitis for most. But a flu shot is a vaccine because it does what all vaccines do: provide immunity to a specific condition. In this case, the condition just happens to be a pesky flu or cold.

Getting your yearly flu shot is your choice, of course, but note that it is highly recommended for some groups of people, particularly children, the elderly, and those with compromised immune systems. You may also be required to get one if you work in a health facility to protect both yourself and the patients you work with. 

Whether or not you're getting your flu shot this year, we know you have questions about safety, administration, and more. Luckily, we have all the answers to help dissolve your concerns and enjoy a flu-free season.

Vaccines for Children and Teens

As a parent, your child's safety is always top of mind, whether you're keeping them away from electrical outlets when they start to crawl or explaining the dangers of drugs and alcohol when they're going to their first high school party.

You also want to protect your child from bacteria and viruses, right? No, we're not telling you to sanitize everything every second or stop the kids from playing in the sand box. Instead, simply follow the recommended immunization schedule. Your kids will be completely immune to life-threatening diseases like polio, tetanus, pertussis, measles, and more if you do.

Yes, it's hard to see your child cry when getting a shot, and confusing when they run a fever the day after. It's also frustrating when it's time for a vaccine you can't afford. We have a few tips for all of these situations and more below so that you have one less thing to worry about. 

The Vaccine Debate

Not too long ago, vaccines were a routine part of a child's doctor's visit, no questions asked. When did they become so controversial?

You've likely heard about the recent anti-vaccination movement, where parents and anti-vaccination advocates support not vaccinating children, claiming vaccines cause autism and other conditions. These advocates are concerned with childrens' safety, as all parents are, and they bring up concerns about additives and preservatives used in vaccine formulas. The important questions, though, are whether or not science supports their claims, and whether any risks associated with vaccinating outweigh the benefits.

We're making sure you're armed with the information you need to make your own informed decision. Below, you'll find answers to a few of the most common questions as well as additional resources to help you take your research to the next level. 

Vaccines for Adults

Adulthood comes with a whole lot of newfound independence... and responsibilities. You need to pay your bills on time, do the laundry, cook a little something to eat, and stay on top of your doctor's visits. That includes getting your disease-preventing vaccines on time. 

You're not a kid anymore and your immune system is stronger than before, but your body is still susceptible to bacteria and viruses that could threaten your well-being. In fact, your adult body is susceptible to a whole new set of infections. Learn about how you can prevent them below.

What Vaccines Do I Need When Traveling?

You have your passport ready, your bags are nearly packed, and there's nothing that can ruin your trip abroad – except getting sick during it.

Traveling overseas sometimes requires a vaccination to protect your body from diseases that your immune system isn't exactly immune to. Typhoid fever, Japanese Encephalitis, and even measles and hepatitis may be a risk if you're not up-to-date with your immunization schedule. 

Visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) here to see which vaccinations you need based on the country you're traveling to. Then visit your doctor for your immunization and a sickness-free trip!