Vaccination schedule for children – What is Vaccination or Immunization or inoculation ? What are booster doses ? Also vaccination schedule for adolescents explained.
The most ideal vaccination schedule for children explained in detail !
The defence mechanism of the body is called immunity. It is of two types: natural and artificial.
Tetanus, a deadly disease characterised by lockjaw and rigidity of the body muscles, does not occur among the cattle though it is an important killer in humans.
When body defence or resistance to an infection is produced by introducing a protection from outside, it is called artificial immunity.
When the protection is purely outside and short-lived – without participation of body’s internal defence, the antibodies – it is termed passive immunity.
If, on the other hand, the outside protection creates in the body a storehouse of antibodies against a particular disease so that the body actively participates in resisting the infection, it is called active immunity.
Unlike passive immunity, it lasts relatively longer.
So, production of artificial active immunity to safeguard against a particular disease by introducing an agent into the body through injections or orally is called immunization.
It is also termed vaccination or inoculation. The agent that is used to produce immunity is called vaccine.
Many mothers are concerned if vaccination really protects the child. Yes. In fact, it is the most practical and effective tool available with the doctors to protect the child against several communicable diseases.
Once in a while, despite proper vaccination, the child may suffer from a particular infection. The disease in the child may suffer from a particular infection.
The disease in the child in such a situation is likely to be slight – at least much milder than what it would have been if the vaccination had not been given at all. Obviously, even if the worst comes to the worse, vaccination pays.
You must cooperate with your doctor in getting your child vaccinated properly on time.
Just because it would take some of your time or cause the child little pain or fever is no justification for neglecting this essential component of child rearing.
You should also educate other mothers in your circle, as also in your neighbourhood about the preventive value of vaccination in a simple but effective way.
What are booster doses ?
Artificial active immunity lasts relatively longer. To produce it, we give one or two (at times even more) doses of a vaccine at definite intervals. This is called primary vaccination.
With the passage of time, the immunity so produced starts decreasing. If, after a particular time, the immunity so produced starts decreasing, another dose of the vaccine is administered.
It will go a long way to boost the effect of the initial vaccination. This is the secondary vaccination or booster(s). Remember not to forget it. It is not just the additional protection; it is an essential part of immunization.
Guidelines for individual vaccinations:
These are not a real substitute for the judgement and wisdom of your doctor who knows your child and your circumstances the best.
Also, there may be slight variation in the recommendations from centre to centre.
National immunization schedule in India
In the order of beneficiaries Age, Vaccine, Number of doses and the route of administration
Infants – 6 weeks to 9 months – DPT – 3 – Intramuscular
6 weeks to 9 months – Polio vaccine– 3 – Oral
Birth to 3 months – BCG vaccine – 1 – Intradermal
9 to 12 months – Measles – 1 – Subcutaneous
Children – 18 to 24 months – DPT – 1* – Intramuscular
18 to 24 months – Polio – 1* – Oral
5 to 6 years – DT – 1* – Intramuscular
5 to 6 years – Typhoid – 2 – Subcutaneous
10 years – TT – 1** – Intramuscular
10 years – Typhoid – 1** – Subcutaneous
16 years – TT – 1** – Intramuscular
16 years – Typhoid – 1** – Subcutaneous
Pregnant 16 to 36 weeks – TT – 1** – Intramuscular
** 2 doses, if not vaccinated previously
Note: Interval between two doses should not be less than one month. Minor coughs, colds and fever are not a contraindication to vaccination.
Vaccination schedule recommended by the Indian Academy of Paediatrics
Vaccine Age recommended
BCG – Birth-2 weeks
OPV – Birth, 6, 10, 14 weeks;
16-18 months, 5 years (at least 6 times)
DPT – 6, 10, 14 weeks; 16-18 months, 5 years
Hepatitis B – Birth, 6, 14 weeks; 6, 10
and 14 weeks; or 0, 4 and 24 weeks
HIB conjugate – 6,10, 14 weeks; 16-18 months
Measles – 9 months plus
MMR – 15 months
Typhoid – 2 years
TT/Td – 10, 16 years
2 doses of TT – Pregnant women
Varicella (Chickenpox) – Above 1 year
Hepatitis A – Above 1 year
Vaccination schedule in adolescents
Tetanus toxoid – Booster at 10 and 16 years
Rubella – As part of MMR vaccine or monovalent to girls at 12-13 years, if not given earlier
MMR vaccine – 1 dose at 12-13 years of age (if not given earlier)
Hepatitis B vaccine – 3 doses (0, 1 and 6 months), if not given earlier
Typhoid vaccine – TA, Vi or oral typhoid vaccine every 3 years
Varicella vaccine – 1 dose upto 12-13 years and 2 doses after 13 years, if not given earlier
Hepatitis A vaccine – 2 doses (0, 6 months) if not given earlier.