The MMR vaccine provides protection against three diseases: measles, mumps and rubella. It is a highly effective vaccine that helps prevent these viral infections, which can cause significant illness and complications.
Here are some important points about the MMR vaccine:
Measles is a highly contagious viral infection that spreads through respiratory droplets. It can cause symptoms such as high fever, cough, runny nose, red eyes and a characteristic rash. Measles can lead to serious complications, including pneumonia, encephalitis (inflammation of the brain) and even death.
Mumps is a viral infection that primarily affects the salivary glands, causing swelling and tenderness in the jaw area. It can also cause fever, headache, muscle aches and fatigue. Mumps can lead to complications such as meningitis (inflammation of the membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord), orchitis (inflammation of the testicles) and in rare cases, hearing loss.
Rubella (German Measles)
Rubella is a viral infection that typically causes a mild illness with a rash, low-grade fever and swollen lymph nodes. However, rubella can have severe consequences if contracted by pregnant women, as it can lead to miscarriage, stillbirth or birth defects, collectively known as congenital rubella syndrome.
The MMR vaccine is typically given in two doses. The first dose is usually administered between 12 and 15 months of age and the second dose is given between 4 and 6 years of age. The vaccine provides long-lasting immunity against measles, mumps and rubella.
The MMR vaccine has a long history of safety and effectiveness. Like any vaccine, it can have mild side effects such as temporary soreness at the injection site or a mild fever. Serious side effects are extremely rare.
Achieving high vaccination rates within a population is important for creating herd immunity. This protects those who cannot receive the vaccine due to medical reasons or those who may have a weakened immune system.
It is important to follow the recommended immunisation schedule provided by healthcare professionals to ensure proper protection against measles, mumps and rubella. Vaccination not only helps protect individuals but also plays a crucial role in preventing the spread of these diseases and their potential complications.