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Vaccination or as we commonly referred to it as immunisation is a simple, safe and effective way of protecting ourselves from harmful diseases before we come into contact with them. Diseases that vaccines prevent can be dangerous, or even deadly. When you present yourself or your family for immunization, you are making a best choice of protecting yourself, your family and even the community from dangerous preventable diseases.
How does vaccine work?
When germs, such as bacteria or viruses, invade the body, they attack and multiply in the body. This invasion is called an infection, and the infection is what causes illness. Our immune system uses several tools to fight infection. These tools are in the blood. Apart from the red blood cells which serve to carry oxygen to tissues and organs, there are also white blood cells or immune cells which fight infections. These white cells are in 3 groups: i. B-lymphocytes ii. T-lymphocytes and iii. Macrophages: These body soldiers get activated when infection enters the body. Sometimes they win or they lose depending on a host of other factors.
Vaccines help us to develop immunity by imitating an infection. This type of infection, however, does not cause illness, but they are strong enough to stimulate our immune system to produce T-lymphocytes and other antibodies.
It is because of these reasons that sometimes, after getting a vaccine, one can develop minor symptoms, such as fever or feels as if one is developing an illness. Such minor symptoms are normal and should be expected as the body builds immunity.
After the ‘biological war’ is over, the body keeps a few of the T-lymphocytes as memory cells. They are equipped to go into action very quickly if the body encounters the same germ again. When the familiar antigens or germs are detected in the body, the body reproduce these antibodies in large quantities to attack the germs and get rid of them even without our knowing or at worst have mild symptoms.
Type of Childhood Vaccines
Live, attenuated vaccines: Examples of live, attenuated vaccines include measles, mumps and rubella vaccine (MMR) and varicella (chickenpox) vaccine. Even though these vaccines are very effective, not everyone can receive them. Children with weakened immune systems—for example, those who are undergoing chemotherapy, HIV patients—cannot get live vaccines.
Inactivated vaccines: The inactivated polio vaccine is an example of this type of vaccine.
Toxoid vaccines: The DTaP vaccine contains diphtheria and tetanus toxoids are examples of Toxoid vaccines
Subunit vaccines: The pertussis (whooping cough) component of the DTaP vaccine is an example of a subunit vaccine.
Conjugate vaccines: An example of this type of vaccine is the Haemophilus influenzae type B (Hib) vaccine.
So why don't you come to any of the Zenith Medical Centre to get yourself covered from the common preventable illnesses through the appropriate vaccines and advise.
Whether you are travelling out of Australia, expecting a baby in the family, grandparents or vaccine for occupational protection like Q fever, our Doctors at Zenith Medical Centre will assist you with proper advise as to what type of vaccine you need.
For more information check the Health Link update.
Remember, at Zenith Medical Centre, it is all in your best interest!!!