Pfizer’s and Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccines have been given emergency approval by the FDA for use in children aged 6 months and up. This suggests that the majority of children in the United States can be vaccinated against COVID-19. You, as a parent, may be wondering where this new shot stands in relation to your child’s current immunization regimen.
Most American children adhere to a conventional immunization regimen from birth through age 18 that shields them from a wide range of potentially fatal diseases like polio, meningitis, and measles.
Adding the COVID-19 vaccine is a simple matter, but there is another aspect to think about: the pandemic has caused a substantial fall in rates of all childhood immunizations among youngsters under 18, putting kids’ health at risk. Because of the millions of lives they have helped save, it is crucial that children receive their recommended vaccinations.
The number of children receiving vaccines (other than for the flu) dropped by 20% between May 2019 and May 2020, as families were discouraged from seeking medical attention due to social isolation strategies, as reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Families are urged to complete their child’s vaccination schedule as soon as possible. Pediatricians are encouraging parents to schedule well-child visits now that the COVID-19 vaccine is readily available so that children may catch up on other immunizations.
Due to the CDC’s initial recommendation that no further vaccinations be administered within two weeks of getting the COVID-19 injection, it would be prudent to prioritize childhood vaccines in advance of the introduction of the COVID-19 shot. The CDC has revised its previous recommendation and now says that children can safely receive the COVID-19 vaccination in addition to any other vaccines they are due to receive, such as the flu shot.
The original guidance was put in place less to ensure everyone’s safety and more to prevent people from being confused about which vaccine might have caused side effects. This has been suggested so that people won’t become confused if they have any adverse reactions to their vaccinations. No COVID-19 vaccinations used in the United States are live virus vaccines, despite the advice that they be given at least 4 weeks apart.
However, what should you do if you still have doubts about putting your child through the COVID-19 vaccinations? We’ve included answers to some of the most frequently asked questions regarding giving your child the COVID-19 vaccine below.
Should the COVID-19 Vaccine Be Given Higher Priority Than Routine Shots?
Since there are still high levels of COVID-19 in many communities and a growing number of younger children becoming ill with the virus, it is imperative that the vaccine be made a top priority once it becomes available.
Is There a Future for COVID-19 Vaccine in Routine Child Immunizations?
The question of whether or not we (including our children) will have to roll up our sleeves again at this time next year is, perhaps, the most lasting one out there right now. Is it likely that the COVID-19 vaccination, like the flu shot, will become a yearly tradition? It certainly will, however we don’t yet know how long immunity from our initial shots will last.
Scientists won’t know what to do with COVID-19 vaccinations until they see what happens to the virus itself. Nonetheless, like the annual flu shot, you’ll probably have to work this one into your child’s vaccination regimen every year.
Getting a yearly COVID-19 vaccination for your family may not even require a separate trip to the doctor’s office now that these vaccines (for everyone age 6 months and up) and booster shots (for ages 5 and up) are commonly accessible at chain drug shops across the country.
When Should Vaccines Be Given, and Why?
Don’t let the fact that you don’t want your kids to have to deal with so many jabs persuade you to delay standard childhood vaccines. There’s a reason vaccines are given at specific intervals, therefore it’s important to stick to the schedule as much as possible.
It’s understandable that the epidemic caused a hiccup in everyone’s daily lives, but now is the time to get back on track and resume normalcy, and that includes taking the kids in for their annual checkups. Vaccination schedules direct doctors and parents to provide vaccines before children are at peak risk for the diseases they prevent and before they are too young to build a sufficient immune response.
How Critical Is College Students Getting the COVID-19 Vaccine?
Young adults in their twenties want things to get back to normal more quickly than anyone else. However, children on college campuses who choose not to get vaccinated are at serious risk of contracting the COVID-19 virus.
New students should be aware that the close quarters in a classroom provide a health risk due to the spread of germs. Living with people other than your home presents transmission hazards. Finally, because college students tend to be more sociable, vaccinations can greatly aid in restoring a normal social climate on campus.
Those older than 6 months of age should get vaccinated against COVID-19 because the vaccine is widely available. But don’t let it stop you from vaccinating them young. Remember to catch up on vaccinations that you may have missed because of isolation and quarantine precautions taken during the pandemic.
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