National Immunization Awareness Month: Get Your Children Immunized Before the School Year Starts

August is National Immunization Awareness Month, and it’s the perfect time to get your children immunized before the start of the school year. Immunizations are important for keeping your children healthy and safe, and they can help protect them from potentially deadly diseases. If you’re not sure whether or not your child is up-to-date on their immunizations, check with their doctor or visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Getting your child immunized is one of the best things you can do to protect their health.

Here are some of the many reasons why immunizations are important for your family,  according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

  • Immunizations can protect your family from serious and sometimes deadly diseases.
  • Immunizations are one of the most successful and cost-effective public health tools available. They help save lives, prevent disability, and reduce healthcare costs. 
  • Immunizations are safe. Serious side effects from immunizations are rare. 
  • Immunizations help keep our communities healthy by preventing the spread of disease. When more people are vaccinated, it creates what is called “herd immunity.” This helps protect people who can’t be vaccinated, like infants and those with weakened immune systems.

There are certain times when getting an immunization might not be a good idea, such as when you are sick  or pregnant. Talk to your doctor about whether or not you should get an immunization if you have any questions or concerns.

What reactions to watch for after you get immunizations: Most people don’t have any problems after getting immunizations. It’s normal to have some soreness and redness where you got the shot, and you might also feel a little tired or achy. These reactions usually go away within a day or two. If you have any severe reactions, such as difficulty breathing, call 911 or get to the nearest emergency room right away.

Tips for reducing swelling after immunizations:  If you or your child has swelling and pain after getting an immunization, here are some things you can do to help relieve the discomfort:

  • Apply a cool, wet cloth to the area.
  • Take acetaminophen or ibuprofen for pain relief.
  • Keep the arm or leg that received the shot elevated.
  • If your child is old enough, have them move their arm or leg around to help reduce swelling.
  • Have them take a warm bath and move the area around to help reduce swelling.

If you’re looking for more information on National Immunization Awareness Month, or just want to learn more about immunizations, make sure you discuss it with your physician.