What do you choose for your teen- Vaccination or Hesitation
Created by Dr Rakesh Tiwari Updated on Jul 29, 2021
“My parents think maintaining social distancing norms, wearing masks, and sanitizing frequently is enough. They are not sure of me getting vaccinated” Pratyush (name changed), an 18 year old from Chandigarh said. According to Pratyush and many other teenagers like him, parents are as much scared (if not more) of the Vaccine, as they are of Covid.
Dilpreet, a resident from Navi Mumbai says they are in Control of Covid-19. However, with the vaccine, they don't know.
The growing resistance to vaccination is certainly straining family life as much as it is posing a threat of the unvaccinated. Parental refusal of vaccines can lead to an increased occurrence of diseases that are vaccine preventable.
What is Vaccine Hesitancy?
Vaccine Hesitancy is a term used to describe anyone who is unsure and doubtful about vaccinations and chooses to delay or refuse immunizations.
Are you hesitant to get Covid-19 Vaccine for your child?
There have been numerous studies that looked into the reasons why parents are hesitant to get their children vaccinated and these can be clubbed into the following points:
Need for more information
Now these reasons could lead to you completely refusing vaccination or delaying it for more information.
Five myths about coronavirus vaccines
There are some vaccines that are better than others and worth waiting for.
Young and healthy people don't need vaccines.
Are the vaccines safe, they were so hastened.
Some vaccines may change the DNA
You can get COVID-19 from the vaccine.
What can this Lead To - Pandemic of the Unvaccinated
The trend has been observed globally. There is a greater risk for people who are unvaccinated. Health Experts in the United States are urging more Americans to get vaccinated, to reduce risk and fear of the fourth wave.
“This is becoming a pandemic of the unvaccinated,” Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said at a press briefing on July 16.
Infact, an 18 year old teenager Kelly Danielpour founded Vaxteen to reverse the decline in vaccinations by encouraging teenagers and young adults to take responsibility for their health. It helps young people access vaccines and learn about their options if their parents don't want them to get vaccinated.
Clearly, a vaccine is a collective health measure and needs participation from all to be truly effective.
What Experts Say
According to Harvard Medical School, “Vaccines are a medical treatment, and like any medical treatment, they can have risks and side effects. So much has been done, and is still being done, to make vaccines as safe as possible. It's always important to ask questions and be careful in making decisions.”
It is important for you to educate yourself and equip yourself with the necessary information so that you can make responsible decisions for your child.
The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests some communication methods to provide reassurance in some circumstances. It is important for vaccination providers to listen to your concerns and acknowledge them.
Some other points for providers include
Provide important information first and make sure parents understand. Talk about parents' correct beliefs about immunization and modify misconceptions.
It is also important to discuss the benefits of vaccines and the possibility of adverse events. Being transparent about what is known about immunizations and what is not also helps.
The right approach and attitude of the information provider is the way forward.