Vaccination is a hot subject on parenting forums, especially when it comes to the potential side effects of vaccines. With measles on the rise, the topic is all over the news lately. Many new parents or parents to be often find themselves wondering: what are the side effects of vaccines, and just how worried should I be? The answer varies based on both the vaccine and your child.
While some kids do have very severe reactions, we’re covering common side effects of vaccines. The bottom line is the common side effects are much more manageable than the actual disease. Below is a list of just some of the typical childhood vaccines and what some of the side effects are. Hopefully I have answered some of your questions.
What are the common side effects of vaccines?
As a general statement you can expect to see your child experience some pain and swelling at the site of injection, or maybe just some itching. She may experience a mild fever, which is considered under 102 F, or just generalized aches and pains. Most children might experience one or more of these side effects of vaccines.
DTaP side effects: This vaccine is 3 in 1 including diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis. The side effects you might look out for once your child receives this vaccine are fever, redness, tenderness or swelling where the shot was given. Some other mild side effects are tiredness, loss of appetite, fussiness and possibly some vomiting. These occur in every 1 of 4 children. The side effects will only last a couple of days.
Hepatitis A side effects: These side effects are similar to the DTaP side effects. Your child might experience soreness at the site, loss of appetite, tiredness or maybe headaches. These do not happen to all children, but most might at least experience soreness or tenderness at the injection site, I know mine always do.
Influenza (inactive) side effects: Many people think that if you get the flu vaccine, you will get the flu. The truth is that it is an inactive strain of the flu and you will not get the flu from it. What you might be feeling is the side effects, like with any other vaccine. Some of those side effects can be soreness, redness or swelling at the site. Other mild side effects you might experience are aches, fever, cough, headache, itching and fatigue. This might seem like the flu to you (especially since you might feel achy) but rest assured it is not.
MMR side effects: You might have heard of this vaccine a lot lately in the media and around social media with the recent outbreak of measles starting at Disneyland in California. Getting the vaccine is less harmful than actually getting measles, mumps or rubella. The mild side effects one might experience are fever, mild rash or swelling of the glands. Some pain or stiffness in the joints is typically only experienced in teenagers and adults. Again, the choice is yours, but the side effects are less worrisome than the actual disease.
Vaccination is a hot debate topic, and will continue to be. The choice is yours as a parent. The one thing I will say is to do your research. Do not base your vaccinating opinion on that of a celebrity or some news story. Do research based on hard facts. These vaccines have been around for years for a reason. And there is a reason for the recent outbreaks in diseases that we haven’t seen for decades.
What are your thoughts on the topic of the side effects of vaccines? We welcome all opinions but ask that everyone be respectful of each other’s opinions.