What is vaccination for?
The topic of vaccination is very acute. Fierce debate about whether vaccinations should be given, whether it is safe, do not subside. Doctors convince us that only vaccination can protect us from deadly diseases.
In turn, opponents of vaccines give stories about the terrible consequences of vaccines. Who is right? Is vaccination necessary? How dangerous is vaccination? And who really needs vaccinations?
What is vaccination for?
Vaccination is the introduction into the body of a weakened or killed pathogen. In response, the immune system produces antibodies to combat it. The next time this particular microorganism enters the human body, the immune system “remembers” it and immediately responds, preventing the development of the disease.
Thus, vaccination forms a person’s immunity to the disease. But it also has another important function: it prevents epidemics.
What can vaccination protect against?
The National Vaccination Calendar includes vaccinations against the most dangerous infectious diseases. These are the so-called childhood infections (measles, mumps, rubella, whooping cough, diphtheria), poliomyelitis, tuberculosis, hepatitis B, tetanus, and hemophilic infection.
They are made for all children without fail, however, parents can refuse vaccination. But then they take responsibility for the possible consequences of failure – the risk for the child to catch a serious, sometimes incurable disease.
Parents who refuse vaccination are responsible for their health
In addition, there are vaccines for other diseases that can be administered to both children and adults, but on a voluntary basis. Here are some of the most sought after vaccinations:
from pneumococcal infection;
from tick-borne encephalitis;
from hepatitis A.
Who needs these vaccinations in the first place?
The benefits of influenza vaccination
Many people take the flu lightly, considering this infection as something like SARS. Some refuse to get the flu shot for fear of complications. In fact, the benefits of influenza vaccination outweigh the risk of side effects.
Influenza is much more dangerous than a common cold. And first of all, with its complications: pneumonia, pericarditis, myocarditis, impaired renal function, ENT diseases, meningitis, etc. Moreover, many flu complications become chronic.
Influenza is also distinguished by the fact that it spreads very quickly. You can become infected with them, even while in the same room with the patient. That is why there are epidemics of this disease.
The only sure way to avoid infection during the epidemic is to get vaccinated.
The flu vaccine is either administered intramuscularly or instilled into the nose. It may contain:
weakened living viruses – acts stronger, but is harder to carry;
“Killed” (inactivated) viruses.
To avoid infection during the flu epidemic, you need to be vaccinated
Inactivated vaccines, in turn, can be:
whole-virionic – contain whole viruses, have many side effects;
split (split vaccines) – include destroyed viruses, due to better cleaning, contain less toxic substances than whole-virionic ones, protect against several strains of the virus;
subunit – do not contain viral proteins, give a minimum of side effects.
How effective is influenza vaccination? Vaccination does not give a 100% guarantee that the vaccine will not get sick. But the flu (if it occurs) will pass in a mild form, the person will recover quickly and, most importantly, will not receive severe complications of the disease.
Doctors advise everyone to get the flu shot. Moreover, the flu shot is free. But there are risk groups, and those who are included in them must be vaccinated. It:
children from 6 months – they are especially vulnerable, especially those who attend child care facilities, where the possibility of an epidemic is high;
all working in schools, kindergartens, nurseries;
older people – after 50 years;
suffering from cardiovascular diseases (with the exception of severe heart failure), diseases of the lungs and bronchi (with the exception of bronchial asthma);
women planning pregnancy and pregnant, but only after the first trimester;
people who have recently had surgery or injury.
You need to be vaccinated against influenza every year in the fall, before the onset of the epidemic.
Pneumococcal infection is the culprit not only of pneumonia and bronchitis, but also of other diseases – otitis media, tonsillitis, meningitis. The infection spreads easily, especially in large groups.
People with chronic conditions need vaccinations
Vaccinations against pneumococcus are recommended:
To old people;
people suffering from chronic diseases of the lungs, heart, diabetes;
those who often suffer from colds.
Immunity after vaccination lasts up to five years.
Rotavirus is especially dangerous for babies up to the age of two.