Thursday, June 30, 2011

Should Preemies Be Vaccinated?

Many of us know the benefits of vaccinating our babies, but then there are the possible risks that seem to have parents on pins and needles these days.  Does the same apply to preemies?  This is a good question, and one I had to research pretty quickly as there has been ongoing confusion if vaccinations are safe for preemies since they are not as developed as healthy newborns. Here is what I found:

According to the Labor of Love,  "just like a newborn, the decision to vaccinate your preemie is entirely up to you." But, and this is a big but, if you decide to get your preemie vaccinated at two months old, you should take every precaution possible as they are at an "increased risk for respiratory and/or heart side effects." This is why waiting until more than two months after they are born to have them vaccinated is recommended. Because so many preemies have multiple health conditions, getting them too many vaccinations all at once can put them at great risk of continued health problems, which you most definitely want to avoid.  Studies do show that "preemies do have the worse reactions to vaccines just within 48 hours than other babies."

I guess the best overall advice to any parent with a preemie is to just wait until your preemie is older to avoid those medical and health risks. Again, it is up to you what you choose to do, but don't forget to ask your preemie's pediatrician for advice before going forward with any vaccinations.

For more information, check out Tundraco's Daily Living Guide.

Source: Labor of Love

Image: Wikimedia Commons

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