Humpday Health: Why it’s important to get yourself vaccinated


WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Doctors all over the country recommend everyone to get vaccinated for diseases like tetanus, measles, and more.

However, some people are worried about the perceived side effects of those vaccines.

“Vaccines are important for preventative health and for public health reasons. It’s important to protect yourself and protect others by getting yourself vaccinated,” said Andres Afanador, MD, a pediatrics doctor at New Hanover Regional Medical Center.

Getting a shot may not be the most fun thing in the world, but it’s an important one to stop the spread of infectious diseases.

Diseases that plagued our ancestors like smallpox, polio, or measles? Almost or completely gone, thanks to vaccines.

Doctors have kept the list of recommended vaccinations relatively static over the last decade, but there’s a newer shot that’s causing a stir.

“One big, new, and sort of controversial, but not really controversial, addition has been the Gardasil vaccine. The Gardasil vaccine is a vaccine that prevents HPV virus, prevents cervical cancer,” said Afanador.

If you don’t have insurance or another means to pay for vaccinations, you’re still covered.

“To go to public school, they ask you, they don’t exactly mandate you, to have preventative vaccines, things to prevent tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis, all these kinds of things. So that you can get for free at the health department,” said Afanador.

In the last few years, some have decided to become anti-vaxxers, due to the perceived side effects of vaccines.

Afanador says that joining this movement is unwise.

“The bottom line is there’s a lot of misinformation about the side effects of vaccines, the efficacy of vaccines, and the safety of vaccines, but the truth is there’s no actual scientific evidence that supports some of the side effects that people are hearing,” said Afanador.

So it’s a good idea to get yourself and your kids vaccinated, doing your part in preventing the spread of disease.

Categories: Local, New Hanover