National Immunization Month is here to remind us again that vaccines are important in our lives. Immunization is a method in which the person’s body is strengthened against intentionally-placed invading agents known as immunogen. The process of immunization can prevent a person from full exposure to sickness or disease. This prevents countless hospitalizations and deaths each year. Not only does immunization help you stay healthy, it keeps you from passing on sickness to the people around you.
There are two main kinds of immunization:
Active immunization – This occurs naturally when an individual makes contact with invasive organisms, and the body builds a defense against the intruders.
Passive immunization – This process involves the transmission of pre-synthesized antibodies into the immune system. A gentle introduction of a neutralized version of a disease into a person’s immune systems allows the body to identify the disease, build an immunity to it, and prepare to attack it if the person is exposed to the real sickness in the future.
The majority of today’s health professionals, medical researchers, and professional medical groups highly recommend immunization for kids. According to the Immunization Action Coalition (IAC), the country’s leading source of childhood, adolescent, and adult immunization, immunizations have built a strong case for themselves. The coalition’s website states, “During the past 50 years, immunization has saved more than a billion lives and prevented countless illnesses and disabilities in the United States.”
Talk to your primary care physician to find out if you and/or your child are current on immunizations. You may also visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information about keeping current on immunizations: http://www.immunize.org/cdc/schedules/