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Immunizations Help Ensure Your Growing Baby’s Health

baby immunizations infographic

The first year of a child’s life goes by quickly for parents as they keep track of their baby’s developmental milestones. These are cause for celebration—crawling, sitting up, getting that first tooth, eating solid foods, and revealing their adorable personalities. But the first year also brings what may seem like constant trips to the pediatrician, many of which involve immunizations. Here is what to expect the first year:

Immunizations Recommended from Birth to Six Months

  • Hepatitis B
  • Diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis (DTaP) starting at two months
  • Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib)
  • Polio (IPV)
  • Pneumococcal disease
  • Rotavirus

Immunizations Recommended from Seven to 11 Months

The CDC recommends the influenza vaccine during the last half of baby’s first year, then annually after that.

Immunizations Recommended at 12 Months

  • Varicella, more commonly known as chickenpox
  • Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib)
  • Measles, mumps, and rubella (MMV)
  • Pneumococcal disease
  • Hepatitis A

Some parents have concerns about side effects from vaccines and the number of vaccines given. But the benefits of vaccines vastly outweigh their drawbacks.

Vaccines given at the two-month visit and their boosters at the four- and six-month visit protect against diseases like meningitis, pneumonia, blood stream infections, severe viral diarrhea, whooping cough, polio, and diphtheria. “Each one of these diseases can be life altering and even cause death,” says Jose Morales Moreno, MD, a pediatrician and assistant professor in the Division of General Pediatrics at University of Utah.

The most common side effects of these vaccines are injection site swelling and redness, pain, fever, muscle aches, and headaches. Although the side effects may be uncomfortable, these are signs that the baby’s immune system is hard at work.

Many parents worry that their children will be adversely affected by the number of vaccinations that their babies receive. However, immunizations are normally very well tolerated, and the benefit of being able to prevent many childhood diseases, some of them with potentially serious consequences, means a healthier life for your child.