Adolescent Vaccines

Life-Saving Vaccines for Teens in Jacksonville FL!

Your parents made sure that you were protected as a young child against many diseases that threaten little children. Now it’s time to protect you as a teen heading into your adult years. There are a few potentially life-saving vaccines for teens that Carithers Pediatric Group offers right in Jacksonville FL that you will want to strongly consider.

Meningococcal vaccine

ABOUT MENINGITIS: Meningococcal meningitis is a severe infection that most commonly occurs in infants and adolescents. It is an infection of the covering of the brain and can lead to brain damage, other organ damage, and even death. As a matter of fact, adolescents are at the highest risk for fatality. It is not a common disease, but the problem is that when it occurs, it is serious and it is highly contagious. It has been known to spread through college dorms, military barracks and classrooms.

WHEN TO GET IT: You should get your first dose at 11-12 years old (by the 7th grade) and your second (booster) at 16-17 years old. This will be part of your well checkup.


Tetanus booster (TdaP):

ABOUT TETANUS AND PERTUSSIS: A Tetanus bacterium is found in dirt and in rust and therefore is a potential problem for infection with any type of cut or wound. The disease caused by it makes a person have intense spasms, lock jaw, irregular heartbeats, fever, and trouble breathing. Pertussis is a disease that is also covered in this vaccine. This infection can give a terrible cough called the “100 day cough” that seems to last forever! More importantly, little babies that get this illness can end up in the hospital and can even die, so it is especially important for sisters and brothers and babysitters to get protected.

WHEN TO GET IT: The series of five childhood tetanus vaccines are given from age 2 months until 5 years old. As a teen, you should get this booster at 11-12 years old (7th grade requirement) and then every 10 years after that. If it has been 5 years since a booster and you sustain an extensive, dirty wound, an early booster is recommended.


HPV Vaccine

ABOUT THE ILLNESS: Human papilloma virus is more common than you can imagine! It has infected over 20 million people in the US – about half of the sexually active population. HPV causes cervical cancer, penile cancer and oral cancers, as well as genital warts. Over 60 million doses have been given in the United States and no serious side effects have occurred. Over 25,000 cases of cancer can be prevented every year, so protect yourself and get the vaccine. The vaccine is for guys and girls, since it takes two.

WHEN TO GET IT: The vaccine is approved for ages 9-26 years old. It is recommended to be started by 11-12 years old. If started before age 15, there are two doses in the series spaced 6 months apart. When started after age 15, there are three doses in the series, with the second being 2 months after the first and the third given 6 months after the first.