Shots (also called vaccinations or immunizations) help protect children from serious diseases.
Getting all the shots recommended by age 2 will help protect your child from dangerous diseases, including:
- Whooping cough (pertussis)
- Hepatitis A and B
Each vaccine protects your child from different diseases. Vaccines usually require more than one dose (shot). For the best protection, your child needs every dose of each vaccine.
It’s important for all children to get shots.
The germs – like bacteria and viruses – that cause serious childhood diseases are still around. Each child who isn’t vaccinated gives those germs a chance to spread to other children.
When does my child need shots?
Shots work best when children get them at certain ages. Doctors follow a schedule of shots that begins at birth.
Ask the doctor for a list of the shots your child has received. Keep the list in a safe place – you will need it for school and other activities.
Are there any side effects from shots?
Side effects from shots are usually mild and only last a short time. Some children have no side effects at all. Ask the doctor what to expect after your child’s shots.
Shots are very safe.
Vaccines are tested for years before they are put in use. The risk of harm from shots is very small.
Shots don’t cause autism.
Research shows that shots don’t cause autism. Autism is a disorder of the brain. Kids with autism have trouble talking and connecting with other people.
Some parents notice the first signs of autism at the same age their children get certain shots. They may think the two are connected, but research hasn’t shown any link between vaccines and autism.
Get answers to common questions about babies and vaccines.