The history of vaccines goes all the way back to the late 1700’s. It all started with Edward Jenner in 1796. He had a wide range of knowledge from farming communities where he lived. Edward created the first vaccine for smallpox by 1798. Pus from a cowpox sore was injected into a young boy. He later determined that the boy was unaffected by the virus and published his work. Later in 1885, Louis Pasteur developed his own rabies vaccine. This changed the way vaccines were referred to. At first, they were only known as cowpox inoculation for smallpox. (Foundation, 2018)
“A vaccine is a substance used to stimulate the production of antibodies and provide immunity against one or several diseases.” (Press, 2018) Vaccines help the body fight a disease that it come in contact with by making it produce antibodies. Once the body comes into contact with a disease, the immune system can immediately produce antibodies to fight it. Even though our bodies are injected with vaccines, newborn babies are already immune to some diseases such as measles, mumps, and rubella. Those antibodies to protect them were passed down from their mothers, which is called passive immunity. (NHS, 2018)
Every vaccine carries a risk for complications. They can have side effects, which are almost always minor. These effects can be things like redness or swelling where the shot was given or a slight fever. Mild to moderate problems could be a mild rash that lasts a couple days, swelling, or a blister. Serious side effects could be something like a severe allergic reaction, eye infection, rash on entire body, or possibly death. You can always discuss these concerns with your health care provider before your child gets a vaccine. (CDC, 2018) Along with risks that come with vaccines, there are also some benefits. Vaccines that used to kill thousands of children can now save them. They provide protection against a disease for the rest of your life. By getting the vaccination for yourself, you are also protecting those around you. You can also save money by getting vaccines. It cost way more to treat a disease than to prevent it. (Immunization, 2018)
I firmly believe that children should receive vaccinations, and I would definitely want my child to have them. My mother had me receive vaccines as child, and it prevented me from getting some viruses, like the flu. The only side effect I have ever experienced was slight bruising where the shot was given on my arm, and the only ever side effects I have ever seen in a friend is a slight cold a few days after their shot. Although I understand the side effects can be worse, I believe it would be better for my future children. I grew up understanding that they were good for us so I will continue that with my own children.
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