MMR stands for Measles, Mumps and Rubella and is often referred to as the triple vaccine. Children receive a single injection of the MMR vaccine at around 13 months, with another dose given at three years and four to five months old.
The MMR protects against three diseases;
- Rubella¬†(German Measles)
The vaccine contains mild traces of live measles,¬†mumps and rubella viruses.
- Children are vaccinated at thirteen months, with¬†a booster vaccination given at around the age of four.
- The first vaccination¬†is given after your baby’s first birthday as this is the time when the natural¬†immunity acquired from pregnancy and nursing begins to fade.
- Unfortunately,¬†the first dose does not work for all children. Because of this a second dose is
given between three and four years old to protect those children who did not respond¬†to the first vaccination.
- Children who do respond to the first dose, will¬†get a boost of antibodies when they have the second dose.
- The vaccine is¬†given by injection into a muscle, usually in baby’s thigh or the top of his arm.
There has been much said about the link with the MMR and autism,¬†and numerous studies have all failed to find a conclusive link.
However, the three components of the¬†vaccine may have some side effects, occurring at different times.
- Six¬†to ten days after vaccination some children (one in ten) may develop a fever, slight rash and feel generally unwell.
- Very rarely, three weeks after¬†vaccination some children may develop slight swelling of their glands (in response¬†to the mumps part of the vaccine starting to work)
- About one in a thousand¬†children may suffer a febrile convulsion (fitting) after the vaccination. However,¬†if a child catches measles they have a one in 200 chance of fitting.
- One¬†in a million children develops encephalitis, a swelling of the brain, after the vaccine. However, if a child catches measles, the risk is between one in 200 and one in 5000.