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Health and Safety

Author GreatDad Writers
Submitted 06-11-2007

Visit a dentist

It’s time for your baby’s first trip to the dentist. Call and make an
appointment now. It is important to take care of any dental problems
early, before they become serious. The dentist can easily check your baby’s
teeth while your baby sits on your lap. Your dentist can also give you tips
on cleaning your baby’s teeth.

Are you up to date on your baby’s vaccines?

Is your child up to date on her shots?
Vaccines help protect against certain
diseases. Your doctor or clinic gives
vaccines when you bring your child for
regular checkups.

Some vaccines are given in two or three
doses. Others are given in one dose.
Most are given during the first year of a

child’s life. Some require boosters later.

The timing is important. Vaccines protect children when they are most at
risk. The protection from some vaccines may last for years.

When all children are vaccinated, diseases are less likely to break out in
the community. They cannot spread to other people. This makes life safer
for everyone. This means children won’t miss school, and parents won’t
miss work.

By law, your child must be up to date on vaccines so she can enroll in
child care and public school.

Your baby’s shots up to now

During the first year, your child should have had two or three doses of
these vaccines:

  • DTaP. This protects against three diseases:
    • Diphtheria can clog the throat, making it hard to breathe.
    • Tetanus starts in a cut or wound. It affects the nerves in a way
      that stiffens the muscles. Another name for it is “lockjaw.”
    • Pertussis is whooping cough.
  • Polio. This disease can paralyze the whole body for life.
  • Hepatitis B. This disease inflames the liver. It can last for months. In
    some cases, it can result in death.
  • PCV. This vaccine protects against infections caused by a specific kind
    of bacteria. These infections can be in the ears, sinuses, lungs, blood
    and brain. The infections of the lungs (pneumonia), blood and brain
    (meningitis) can result in death.
  • Hib. This vaccine protects against bacterial infections such as meningitis.

More shots needed now or soon

When your child is 12 to 18 months old, she should get:

  • One more dose of all the vaccines above, plus:
  • MMR. This protects against three diseases:
    • Measles appears as a red rash. It can make children more at risk
      for pneumonia and ear infections.
    • Mumps cause throat glands to swell. It can spread to other organs
      and make men sterile.
    • Rubella is a type of measles. Its main threat is to pregnant women.
      It can cause a baby to be born deformed in some way.
  • Varicella. This vaccine protects against chickenpox. This disease is
    known for its itchy sores.

This content has been provided freely by CMC. Click Healthy Start, Grow Smart—Your-Twelve-Month-Old for your free download. Click GreatDad Free Ebook to download the entire Health Start, Grow Smart series.

Note: For info on sex after delivery, subscribe now to the GreatDad newsletter for new dads.

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