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The joy of parenthood is indescribable. First steps. First words. Many milestones. Watching with wonder the curiosity of little children as they begin to sit, crawl, stand, and walk – these are precious moments that bring equal parts joy equal parts anxiety. Parents do their best to help their children avoid painful experiences. This is why the thought of multiple vaccinations could stir up mixed emotions. Parents know that vaccination is beneficial because they could reduce the risk of serious infections, but at the same time, knowing that their child will have to endure pain because of multiple shots is worrying and stressful.
However, the introduction of combination vaccinations can allay some of these fears. As the name suggests, a combination vaccination combines two or more vaccination into a single shot. So, children could be protected against multiple diseases, with fewer shots. For example, the 6 in 1 vaccination is one injection that could protect children against six serious diseases: polio, pertussis, diphtheria, tetanus, hepatitis B, and haemophilus influenzae disease.
All these 6 diseases may put newborns at risk. Polio is highly contagious and can lead to paralysis and disability. Hepatitis B is a viral infection of the liver and can cause a mild short-term infection or even a lifelong illness. Diphtheria is a serious infection that can lead to difficulty breathing and serious complications. Tetanus leads to muscle spasms and is potentially fatal. Pertussis is a respiratory disease that can be very serious in infants and newborns. Hib disease includes severe pneumonia and meningitis and is seen in children less than 5 years old. The 6 in 1 combination vaccination could offer protection against all of these diseases in a single shot. This means fewer injection pricks and less pain and discomfort, with the same protection.
Speaking about the benefits of combination vaccination, Dr. Vikas Satwik, Consultant Paediatrician and Neonatologist Motherhood hospital, Hebbal, Bengaluru, said, “6 in 1 combination vaccination is good for all – the pediatrician, parents, and most importantly, the child! Doctors are relieved to give fewer pricks to a small child who does not understand what is going on. Parents usually do not want their child to receive more than 2 shots at a time, so this way, they are happy that their child is getting fewer injections with the maximum protection possible. And the entire process is quicker, easier, and less painful for the child. I look forward to the day when more combination vaccinations are available that reduce the number of injections and doctor visits.”
According to World Health Organization, immunization is one of the most powerful and fundamental disease prevention tools in the history of public health. It is particularly important for young children as their immune system is still developing.
The latest celebrity to bat for combination vaccination is none other than former Indian cricket captain, current Chennai Super Kings skipper, and most importantly, real-life father Mahendra Singh Dhoni. Dhoni is now informing parents that the 6 in 1 combination vaccination could protect their children from six serious diseases. As a father himself, he is very familiar with the need for vaccination and the conflicting emotions that it may stir in parents. Dhoni is a voice of reason, and this awareness initiative can hopefully help parents to understand the benefits of 6 in 1 vaccination.
If your baby is less than 2 months old, consult your paediatrician today to know more about vaccination and for any medical advice.
Disclaimer: Issued in public interest by GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceuticals Limited. Dr. Annie Besant Road, Worli, Mumbai 400 030, India.
Information appearing in this material is for general awareness only. Nothing contained in this material constitutes medical advice. Please consult your doctor for any medical queries, any question or concern you may have regarding your condition. The disease list indicated for vaccination is not complete, please consult your child’s paediatrician for the complete vaccination schedule. Views/opinions expressed by the doctor are independent and not influenced in any way by any organization.
This article has been produced on behalf of GSK by Times Internet’s Spotlight team.
CL code: NP-IN-INH-OGM-220013, DoP March 2022