The Washington Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics encourages parents to follow the immunization guidelines recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics. If you have questions about vaccines and your child’s health, have a conversation with your pediatric primary care provider. They will be able to answer your questions and provide resources and support.
Protect Your Child From Measles with the MMR Vaccine
Measles is a contagious virus that is spread through the air. It’s especially dangerous to young children. MMR vaccine is the best way to protect your child from measles infection. You can learn more about measles and the MMR vaccine from the Washington State Department of Health.
What Are the Risks of Measles Infection?
Measles causes a fever, followed by a cough, runny nose, and red eyes. Then a rash of tiny red spots breaks out, covering the entire body. In children, measles can lead to pneumonia, encephalitis (swelling of the brain), deafness, or death.
How Can Children Get the Measles?
Measles outbreaks typically occur in the United States when unvaccinated people travel to areas where measles is more common. They then spread it to other unvaccinated people when they return.
Washington and other states have experienced measles outbreaks. It’s so contagious, that an infected person will infect 90% of the unvaccinated people around them. You can catch measles up to two hours after an infected person has been in a room.
How Can I Protect my Child from Measles?
MMR vaccine protects against measles, as well as mumps and rubella.
Extensive studies have shown MMR to be safe. Children should get the first vaccine dose between 12-15 months and the second between 4-6 years. If your child has missed MMR doses at the recommended ages, he or she can get catch-up doses.
Where Can I get MMR Vaccine for My Child?
Talk to your pediatrician about getting your child vaccinated. If you do not have a pediatrician, you can find a local vaccination clinic here.