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The Pros & Cons of Vaccinating Children

by
author image Kristie Jernigan
Kristie Jernigan is a health writer with over 17 years of experience as a medical social worker. She has worked mainly with the elderly population and with children. She holds a Bachelor of Science in psychology and early childhood from East Tennessee State University and a Master of Science in health care administration and gerontology from the University of Phoenix.
The Pros & Cons of Vaccinating Children
Child getting a vaccination Photo Credit Dmitry Naumov/Hemera/Getty Images

Overview

Edward Jenner who was a country physician from England created the first vaccine in 1796, according to Harvard Medical School. Jenner developed the small pox vaccine, which changed the course of this deadly disease. Since that time, many other researchers and physicians have developed other vaccines. Vaccines have both pros and cons when it come to the health of your child and some parents are struggling with making the decision to vaccinate.

Saving Kids

Utilizing vaccines can prevent life-threatening diseases for your child. In fact, the use of vaccines prevents up to 33,000 deaths every year, according to a 2003 study of researchers at the Pediatric Academic Society, states Procon.org. Vaccinations have been successful in lowering the rate of childhood deaths worldwide, according to the Harvard Medical School. Some deadly disease have even disappeared from our scope all together, such as smallpox, reports Healthy People.

Keeping Kids Healthy

Many diseases that were once quite common are now preventable thanks to development of vaccines. A 2003 study by researchers at the Pediatric Academic Society showed that childhood vaccines prevent 10.5 million cases of infectious diseases, reports Procon.org. Early vaccination can protect your child when they are the most vulnerable to dangerous diseases, according to Harvard Medical School. In addition, vaccinations can benefit the entire community because they can cause your child’s immune system to speed up and stop your child from becoming contagious to others or even shorten the length of time your child is contagious.

Unpleasant Side Effects

Some vaccines can cause mild or temporary side effects, which include a fever, soreness or a lump underneath the skin of the vaccination site, says Family Doctor. Since 1990 there have been 30,000 cases of adverse reactions to vaccines and 13 percent of these side effects have resulted in disability, life threatening illness, hospitalization, or even death. Side effects can worsen if your child is sick when the physician administers the vaccine. Your children will need to be watched very carefully when they are receiving their first vaccines suggests Family Doctor. If you have any concerns about your child's vaccinations, you should immediately consult with your child's pediatrician.

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