When is which vaccination due?

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Vaccination saves lives because it is the best protection against diseases. We tell you at what age which vaccination should be given.

It should be a matter of course to have your child vaccinated – for your own protection, but also for the protection of other people. Nevertheless, parents keep struggling with this decision. Especially when it comes to the first vaccinations in infancy.

These worries or insecurities are not uncommon and partly understandable. Many (children’s) diseases have become rare today. How serious a disease such as diphtheria, measles or whooping cough can be has largely been forgotten. That is why today it is rather discussed what side effects vaccination can have, rather than talking about its benefits.

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The benefit to the general public is definitely greater than any supposed side effect. Because if only a few children were vaccinated, it would only be a matter of time before precisely these dangerous diseases spread again rapidly.

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So that you know when your child should be vaccinated against what, we have summarized the most important things in terms of vaccinations for children. We have followed the recommendations of the Standing Vaccination Committee (STIKO).

Vaccination calendar for children

Between the 7th week of life and the 18th year of life, the STIKO recommends vaccinating children against a total of 13 diseases. Here we explain which vaccinations they are, when they are given and which diseases they protect against:

1st vaccination appointment at 6 weeks

The first vaccination is due for babies at the age of six weeks. On this date, children receive the first basic immunization against the rotavirus, Depending on the vaccine, the child is given a second and possibly a third vaccination at least four weeks apart.

In a nutshell:
rotavirus cause a highly contagious gastrointestinal disease, which can be particularly dangerous in infants and young children. Because severe vomiting diarrhea quickly leads to loss of fluid and electrolyte and, if not treated in time, can lead to dehydration.

2nd vaccination appointment at 2 months

The second basic immunization against rotaviruses takes place on this date.

In addition, the child receives the so-called 7-fold vaccination against tetanus (Tetanus), Diphtheria, pertussis (Whooping cough), Hib (Haemophilus influenzae type b). poliomyelitis (Poliomyelitis), Hepatitis B, pneumococcal,

In a nutshell:
tetanus is triggered by the bacterium Clostridium tetani, which penetrates the body through wounds. A tetanus infection can be fatal. The bacterium attacks the muscle-controlling nerve cells, leads to muscle spasms and damages the heart.

diphtheria occurs primarily in childhood and is an acute, contagious infectious disease caused by the Corynebacterium diphtheriae. The disease used to be called “children’s gagging angels” because it affects the upper respiratory tract. The poison diphtheria toxin secreted by the bacterium can lead to life-threatening complications and long-term consequences.

pertussis, commonly known as whooping cough, is a highly contagious infectious disease. The staccato-like coughing attacks that occur in the course of the disease are particularly dangerous for infants. These manifest themselves as respiratory arrests in infants and are life-threatening.

Hib (Haemophilus influenzae type b) is a serious bacterial infection. It is triggered by the bacterium Haemophilus influenzae type b. This can result in fever and infection of the nasopharynx with inflammation of the middle ear, sinus and pneumonia. In addition, the infection can result in meningitis or inflammation of the epiglottis, which can cause attacks of suffocation.

poliomyelitis, also called polio, is an acute infectious disease with the polio virus. The viruses mainly affect parts of the gray matter of the spinal cord and can lead to permanent paralysis. Adults can also become infected with polio.

Hepatitis B is an infectious disease of the liver caused by the virus of the same name. It often occurs acutely and heals after two to six weeks. If it is chronic, it can cause cirrhosis of the liver and carcinoma of the liver. The rate of chronic hepatitis B is higher, especially in infants and young children.

pneumococcal are bacteria that can cause serious diseases such as meningitis, pneumonia or middle ear infections. Infants and young children are particularly at risk.

3rd vaccination appointment at 3 months

There is the second basic immunization against tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis, Hib, polio and hepatitis B.

4. Vaccination appointment at 4 months

At around four months, babies receive a third basic immunization against tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis, Hib, polio and hepatitis B and the second basic immunization against pneumococci.

Depending on the vaccine chosen, the third and last basic immunization against rotavirus also takes place around the fourth month of life.

5. Vaccination appointment between 11 and 14 months

The fourth and third basic immunizations against tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis, Hib, polio, hepatitis B and pneumococci are carried out.

In addition, children are vaccinated against measles, mumps, rubella and varicella (chickenpox) for the first time during this period (basic immunization 1).

From the age of 12 months they can also receive their first basic immunization against meningococcal C.

In a nutshell:
measles are caused by the virus of the same name and show up in the form of the typical red spots. In addition, there is often a fever and a poor general condition. A measles infection can lead to complications such as pneumonia and meningitis and can be life-threatening.

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mumps (Goat Peter) is triggered by the mumps virus of the same name and transmitted by droplet infection. It mainly affects the salivary glands but also other organs and is manifested by fever and swelling of the upper salivary gland (single or double-sided). Chewing pain is a common side effect. With a complicated course, meningitis can develop, and in boys, testicular inflammation, which can lead to infertility.

rubella are caused by the rubella virus and are highly contagious. Common symptoms of infection include fever, swelling of the lymph nodes and the typical red spots on the body. After a rubella infection you are immune to the virus. Rubella is particularly dangerous during pregnancy. They can lead to termination, premature birth or malformations of the embryo.

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varicellaChickenpox is caused by the varicella zoster virus. Symptoms include fever and an itchy rash. Severe courses can lead to cerebellar or cerebral inflammation, pneumonia or bacterial hyperinfection of the skin.

meningococcal are bacteria (Neisseria meningitidis) that can cause serious, life-threatening illnesses within a short time – meningitis, a purulent meningitis. In rare cases, infection leads to sepsis, a bloodstream infection. The symptoms of the disease such as fever, headache, sensitivity to light and sleepiness appear suddenly and quickly. The painful neck, or stiff neck, is another symptom.

6. Vaccination appointment between 15 and 23 months

This appointment is a so-called catch-up vaccination for 7-fold vaccination (tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis, Hib, poliomyelitis, hepatitis B, pneumococci). That means: If a vaccination appointment is canceled in advance, it can be rescheduled during this period. A first basic vaccination is also possible during this period, if the child has not yet been vaccinated.

Children also receive their second basic immunization for mumps, measles, rubella and varicella.

7. Vaccination appointment between 2 and 4 years

This appointment is also a catch-up vaccination against tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis, poliomyelitis and Hib, should a previous appointment fail or an immunization should have started later.

Vaccinations against hepatitis B, meningococcal C, measles, mumps, rubella and varicella can also be rescheduled.

8. Vaccination date between 5 and 6 years

At this age, children are given a first booster shot against tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis. There is also the possibility of catch-up vaccination against poliomyelitis.

Vaccinations against hepatitis B, meningococcal C, measles, mumps, rubella and varicella can also be rescheduled.

9. Vaccination date between 7 and 8 years

This appointment also offers the possibility of a vaccination against tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis and poliomyelitis.

Vaccinations against hepatitis B, meningococcal C, measles, mumps, rubella and varicella can also be made up for.

10. Vaccination appointment between 9 and 16 years

The tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis vaccinations are then revitalized and the first vaccination against poliomyelitis is carried out.

There is the possibility of catch-up vaccinations for hepatitis B, meningococcal C, measles, mumps, rubella and varicella.

It is also recommended that children between the ages of 9 and 14 be vaccinated against HPV (Human Papilloma Viruses) for the first time. A second vaccination should be given at least five months later. If there are less than five months between the 1st and 2nd dose, a third vaccination is required. Today boys and girls are vaccinated against HPV.

In a nutshell:
HPV (Human papilloma viruses) can lead to uncontrolled and tumor-like growth in infected cells. They are usually benign. But they can also promote malignant changes, such as cervical cancer.

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11. Vaccination appointment at the age of 17

There is the possibility of catch-up vaccinations against tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis, poliomyelitis, hepatitis B, meningococcal C, measles, mumps, rubella, varicella and a catch-up vaccination against HPV.

A tabular overview of all vaccination dates can be found here on the Robert Koch Institute website.

Other sources:
Pediatricians online
WHO

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