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10:42 AM

SheKnows: These Are the Vaccines Your Kid Needs Before Going Back to School

By Katie Smith

Before our children begin the school year, there are certain vaccinations they should have, depending on the grade they're starting. While no one's really a fan of shots, we know they're for our kids' own protection as well as the protection of others. Some of these are mandatory while some are strongly suggested by pediatricians.

There are several booster vaccinations that are needed prior to entering school for kids between ages 4 and 6, Dr. Mildred F. Carson, a board-certified pediatrician with over 15 years of experience in outpatient and inpatient practice, tells SheKnows. These include diphtheria, tetanus and whooping cough (pertussis), polio, measles, mumps and rubella and chicken pox (varicella). 

All these vaccinations are readily available at your child’s doctor’s office or health clinic, Carson says. They keep track of the vaccinations your child has had as well as when they are due for their next ones, but it's important that parents and guardians keep an eye on this as well. It may be a good idea to ask your doctor or nurse to print out a list for you for easy access.

Dr. Barbara Pahud, the associate director of the vaccine unit at Children's Mercy Kansas City, tells SheKnows that last summer, National Cancer Institute-designated cancer centers issued a statement voicing support for the HPV vaccine for children. Although the recommended age for the HPV vaccination is 11 to12 years of age, Pahud recommends that kids get the vaccine by the age of 9 “because, like any other vaccines, parents should want their children protected long before exposure.” Pahud believes receiving the HPV vaccine as early as possible is critical because it produces a more “robust immune response in preteens” than in older teens before exposure to HPV.


Read the full article via SheKnows.

Learn more about the services offered by the Division of Infectious Diseases at Children's Mercy.