As parents we all want the best for our children. We are right to feel concerned about issues surrounding their health and wellbeing. We are right to want to know as much as we can and we are right to ask questions.
It is no different when it comes to immunising your child. You must arm yourself with the facts so you can make an informed decision about what is best for your child.
Here are some of the most important things you should know about immunisation
5 facts about immunisation
Immunisation saves lives
Vaccines are one of most successful public health inventions available. They prevent 2 to 3 million deaths globally each year. Because of vaccines, many infectious diseases are now rare or virtually unheard of in Australia.
All vaccine-preventable illnesses can cause serious illness, even death
Thankfully, due to vaccines, we rarely have to witness the terrible effects of diseases such as polio, diphtheria and measles. But we should not forget that these are all still serious diseases that can cause serious complications and even death. Chickenpox — while usually mild in children — can lead to pneumonia and, in rare cases, encephalitis and is particularly dangerous for pregnant women, newborn babies and people with weakened immune systems. Whooping cough tends to be a milder illness in adults but can be fatal for a new baby.
Immunisation uses your body’s natural defences to build resistance
When a person comes into contact with a disease their body’s immune system acts to fight the disease. Vaccines strengthen the immune system by working with these natural defences so that if a vaccinated person comes into contact with the disease their immune system is already familiar with it and can act quickly to prevent it developing.
All vaccines in Australia have been tested for safety and effectiveness
All vaccines in Australia are thoroughly tested. They must pass very strict safety testing before they are able to be used. They are tested for safety in multiple stages of clinical trials. Vaccines are also constantly monitored and tested for safety by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) after they’re introduced.
Immunisation is a safe and effective way to protect against disease
Without immunisation the only way to develop immunity to a disease is to be exposed to the disease itself. This carries with it the risk of contracting a potentially severe disease. Immunisation is a safe and effective way of protecting our children, ourselves and our community from these diseases.
A high vaccination rate will help ensure these now-rare illnesses do NOT become commonplace in Australia again.
This blog post is sponsored by the Australian Government Department of Health
The Australian Government’s ‘Get the facts about immunisation’ campaign has been developed to give you the facts about immunisation so that you can make informed decisions in the best interests of your child and our community. Click here to get the facts about immunisation.