Building blocks of good health
Lifelong health starts through clinic visits and vaccinations
Once your baby is born, it’s important to visit your local Netcare Baby Clinic regularly to track her development and discuss any questions or concerns you may have regarding feeding, milestones, sleep problems, etc. It’s a good idea to schedule clinic checkups at the following ages: • At two weeks and then every two weeks thereafter until six weeks of age. • Every four weeks from six
to eight weeks of age. • At six months, nine months and every three months until 18 months. • Annually thereafter up to
Childhood vaccines are very carefully monitored and those recommended are aimed at protecting children from a variety of serious or potentially fatal diseases that are completely preventable.
1IS NATURAL IMMUNITY BETTER THAN GETTING A VACCINATION?
A natural infection may offer more complete immunity than a series of vaccinations, but there’s a price to pay for this. For example, a natural chickenpox infection could lead to pneumonia. Vaccination helps prevent diseases and their potentially serious complications.
2DO THEY CAUSE AUTISM?
Vaccines do not cause autism. The original study that ignited the debate years ago has been refuted and retracted. Although signs of autism may appear at about the same time children receive certain vaccines – such as the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine – this is simply a coincidence and is quite rare.
3WHAT ARE THE LIKELY REACTIONS TO VACCINATIONS?
Your child may have no adverse reaction at all, but some children may seem unwell for a short while after the immunisation. They may develop redness or swelling around the point of entry in the case of an injection, or a slight temperature. Don’t give your baby paracetamol prior to a vaccination to prevent fever (as this can affect the efficacy of the vaccines) and don’t fiddle with the swollen area. If you are concerned that your child is having an allergic reaction, please seek medical assistance.