Immunizations: Care at home
What immunizations does my child need?
Listed below are the immunizations (vaccines) your child needs, and the diseases they protect against.
|DTaP||Diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis|
|MMR||Measles, mumps, and rubella (German measles)|
|Td||Tetanus and diphtheria|
|Tdap||Tetanus, diphtheria, and acellular pertussis|
|Hepatitis A series||Hepatitis A|
When does my child need them?
Immunizations are given during check-ups. Most vaccines need to be given more than once to be effective. Ask your doctor or nurse practitioner when your child's next set of shots is due. If you get off schedule, ask about how to make them up.
It is important to keep your child's immunization record in a safe place. Take this record with you:
- whenever you go to the clinic, hospital, or emergency department
- when your child has medical check-ups
- when your child enrolls in school
- if you change to a new medical clinic
What are the side effects?
Your child may have redness, swelling, and soreness at the injection site.
DTaP can cause a slight fever for up to 48 hours, irritability, sleepiness, and a small lump at the injection site.
MMR can cause a fever, a mild rash, and mild joint soreness about 7 to 12 days after the shot that may last 1 or 2 days.
Varicella vaccine can cause a few chickenpox lesions at the site of the shot, or elsewhere on the body, within a few days.
How should I treat the side effects?
You may put a cool cloth on the injection site. Acetaminophen (Tylenol® or another brand) helps to reduce fever and increase comfort. You may give acetaminophen after the shots and every 4 hours as long as the side effects continue. See the handout, "Acetaminophen Dosage Chart" for more information.
When should I call the clinic?
Severe reactions to immunizations are very rare, and should be reported. Please call your clinic if your child experiences any of the following:
- unusual behavior changes
- an unusually high-pitched cry
- crying for more than 3 hours; cannot be comforted
- fever higher than 103° F (39.5° C) rectally (if child is younger than 6 months)
- fever that does not come down with acetaminophen, or lasts longer than 2 days
- extreme sleepiness; difficult to arouse
- limpness or pale color
- exposure to a disease for which the immunizations series has not been completed
- seizure (convulsion, twitching, shaking, or jerking) - call 911 if this happens
This is not specific to your child, but provides general information. If you have any questions, please call your clinic.
Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota
Last reviewed 8/2015
This page is not specific to your child, but provides general information on the topic above. If you have any questions, please call your clinic. For more reading material about this and other health topics, please call or visit Children's Minnesota Family Resource Center library, or visit www.childrensmn.org/educationmaterials.
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