Vaccines 101: What Are Vaccinations?

What Vaccinations Should My Family Get?

What vaccinations does my family need? Which vaccinations are the most necessary?

Every year, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) releases updated vaccination recommendations for infants, children, teens, and adults. Here's a look at who needs to get what and when, as of February 2012.

Birth to 6 Years

  • Hep B (Hepatitis B): Given at birth and at months 1, 2, 6, 12, 15, and 18 (7 total doses)
  • Rotavirus (RV): Given at months 2, 4, and 6 (3 total doses)
  • Diptheria (DTaP): Given at months 2, 4, 6, 15, and 18, and between years 4 and 6 (6 total doses)
  • Hib (Haemophilus influenzae type B): Given at months 2, 4, and 6, and between months 12 and 15 (4 total doses)
  • Pneumococcal (PCV; pneumococcus/pneumonia): Given at months 2, 4, and 6, and between months 12 and 15 (4 total doses)
  • Polio (IPV): Given at months 2 and 4; between months 6 and 18; and between years 4 and 6 (4 total doses)
  • Flu (influenza): Given yearly starting at 6 months
  • Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR): Given between months 12 and 15, and between years 4 and 6 (2 total doses)
  • Chickenpox (varicella): Given between months 12 and 15 and between years 4 and 6 (2 total doses)
  • Hep A (Hepatitis A): Given between months 12 and 23 (2 total doses)

Ages 7 to 18

  • Tetanus, Diptheria, Pertussis (Tdap): Given at years 11 or 12 (one dose)
  • Human Papillomavirus (HPV): Given between years 11 and 12 (3 total doses)
  • Meningococcal (MCV4; meningitis): Given at years 11 or 12 (one dose); booster at 16 years old
  • Influenza: Given yearly

Adults

  • Influenza: Given yearly
  • Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis (Td/Tdap): Booster shot given every 10 years
  • Varicella (chickenpox): 2 doses given during adulthood
  • Human Papillomavirus (HPV): Given to females between years 19 and 26 (3 doses), and to males between years 19 and 21, if not already vaccinated (3 total doses)
  • Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR): Up to two doses given by age 50
  • Zoster (shingles): Given at age 60 to 65 and up (one dose)
  • Pneumococcal (polysaccharide): Given at age 65 and up

What vaccines do kids need when traveling?

Vaccinations are not always available in other parts of the world. As a result, life-threatening diseases are still widespread, especially in developing countries. Depending on your destination, your child may need these additional vaccinations:

Meningococcal (MCV4): For children age 2 and older traveling to sub-Saharan Africa, Saudi Arabia, or countries where meningitis is common.

Yellow Fever: For children 9 months and older traveling to Africa, South America, or other countries where yellow fever is common.

Typhoid: For children age 2 and older traveling to Africa, Asia, Latin America, or other countries where typhoid is common.

Copyright © 2012 Meredith Corporation.

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