2 Month Vaccinations and Why They’re Important for Your Baby
It’s easy to forget that at one time, babies and children died or were permanently disabled by diseases such as diphtheria and polio. That’s no longer the case. Thanks to vaccinations, your baby will grow up protected against a variety of diseases that once took their toll on innocent babies and kids.
Your baby’s doctor will likely recommend vaccinating your baby against hepatitis B, a disease that causes liver inflammation at birth and again between one and two months of age. Then at the age of 2 months that your doctor will likely recommend other vaccinations. These vaccinations include:
. IPV – Vaccine against polio
. DTaP – Vaccine against diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis
. Hib – Vaccine against haemophilus influenza type b
. PCV – Vaccine against pneumococcal pneumonia
. RV – Vaccine against rotavirus
Let’s look at each one and why it’s important.
If there’s one disease that at one time struck fear in the hearts of parents, it’s polio. That’s because the polio virus had the power to paralyze or even kill its unsuspecting victims. Although most kids who got polio didn’t become paralyzed, the threat of it always loomed. Fortunately, polio was completely eradicated from the Northern hemisphere in the early 1990s, although you still see it in some Middle Eastern countries. Most babies get their first IPV at 2 months followed by boosters at 4 months and 6 months. With the seriousness of polio, it’s a relief knowing your child can be protected.
The DTaP vaccine protects against three diseases – diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis. You probably know pertussis by its more common name – whooping cough. All three of these diseases have the potential to cause death and have been mostly eradicated. Sometimes adults develop whooping cough because the protection from pertussis weakens over time.
Tetanus is another preventable disease. Also known as lockjaw, tetanus can cause severe spasms, including spasms of the jaw, problems swallowing, and difficulty breathing. Frighteningly, the death rate is as high as 20%. The bacteria that causes tetanus lives in the soil. So, if your child gets a cut or puncture wound, they’re at risk for tetanus unless they received the vaccine.
Diptheria is a disease that has all but been eradicated in the U.S. Yet up until the 1920s when the vaccine came available, it was a serious threat. Unfortunately, diphtheria still exists in other countries where the vaccine isn’t as widely available. Diptheria can cause paralysis, damage to nerves and to the heart muscle, and lung problems. Even with treatment, the risk of death is around 10%.
The Hib vaccine protects your baby against infection with a bacterium called haemophilus. This vaccine protects against a particular strain called haemophilus B, a type most common in children under the age of 5. Some children with haemophilus infection develop mild symptoms similar to a cold or ear infection, but it can sometimes travel to the brain and nervous system and cause meningitis. Sadly, some babies die or are left with brain damage. Most doctors recommend getting Hib at age 2 months and again at 4 months and 6 months of age.
The PCV vaccine protects your baby against a common form of pneumonia caused by a bacterium. This bacterium can infect a baby’s lungs like a typical pneumonia or it can cause ear infections or even meningitis, a serious disease that can lead to brain damage. If the bacterium enters a baby’s bloodstream they can die from a bloodstream infection. Doctors administer this vaccine at age 2 months and again at 4 and 6 months.
RV protects your baby against infection with a virus called rotavirus. This particular virus can cause serious diarrhea and vomiting. Some babies who develop a rotavirus infection become so dehydrated that they have to be hospitalized. Plus, an unvaccinated baby can spread the infection to other family members. Babies should get the RV vaccine at 2 months, 4 months, and 6 months of age.
The Bottom Line
As you can see, vaccinations are important and a way to protect your baby against potentially fatal diseases. That means you can feel more secure.