For most babies immunisation is a traumatic event. Be comforting and reassuring and try to distract your baby. Remember that you have the right to choose whether you want your child immunised or not.
At six to eight weeks, your baby should be immunised against:
- Polio (OPV)
- Diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis (DPT)
- Hepatitis B (Hep B)
What are the diseases?
- Diphtheria - a bacterial infection that causes airway obstruction and later affects the nerves and heart.
- Tetanus - a bacterial infection that produces a potent nerve toxin causing muscle spasm.
- Pertussis (whooping cough) – a respiratory tract infection caused by bacteria. It can lead to fits, lung collapse, and ear and chest infections.
- Polio – attacks the nervous system. Can cause permanent paralysis in any part of the body and can be fatal if it affects the breathing muscles.
- Hepatitis B - a viral infection of the liver.
- Hib – a type of bacteria that can cause meningitis, resulting in deafness and brain damage.
All immunisations, except polio, are done by injection. Your baby may have a raised temperature or feel unwell after immunisation. Sponging with lukewarm water or giving paracetamol for fever may help. A red swollen patch may appear around an injection site. This should subside within a few weeks.
What is this pimple?
The BCG injection against tuberculosis which was given at birth on the right arm, may leave a pimple which could have a whitish discharge. Don’t apply any medicines, ointments or cream and don’t cover with a plaster. It will heal naturally at about four months.