Our View: A Dose of Prevention…

Our View: A Dose of Prevention...Runny noses. Scratchy throats. Upset stomachs.

Every parent knows the symptoms of childhood illness. They come — and they go.

But when a child has a hacking, dry cough accompanied by fever, vomiting and fatigue, it could be serious, even deadly.

It could be whooping cough.

The time for action is now, before any symptoms occur. You can help prevent this dangerous disease for your children and yourself.

Fortunately, there is a vaccine for whooping cough. It’s available from your doctor or at the health department — and it is a good idea to make sure you and children in your care are vaccinated.

Local and state health officials announced last week they are concerned about a whooping cough outbreak.

If you’re like most folks, you received your whooping cough vaccine early in life. It’s required for students entering kindergarten and sixth grade.

The disease strikes children most often, spread from one to another in the familiar ways kids always seem to pass germs back and forth.

Adults can catch whooping cough, too. Public health officials say it’s a good idea to have a booster every decade to guard against contracting the disease.

Not all illnesses can be prevented, but doing all you can to stay healthy is simply being responsible.

Regular exercising, eating right and controlling your weight — those are the lifestyle factors that can help you enjoy good health. When there is a preventative vaccine available, it just makes sense to take advantage of that additional insurance policy on staying healthy.

We are fortunate to live in an age when deadly diseases of the past can remain exactly there — in the past.

Please consider doing all you can to prevent an outbreak of whooping cough by consulting with your doctor and following his or her advice about the whooping cough vaccine for yourself and for your family.

Editor’s note: Whooping cough has hit epidemic levels in Texas this year, with almost 2,000 reported cases and two deaths. “If we continue to have cases in Texas at the rate we’ve had them so far this year, we’ll have more cases than has been reported for the last 50 years,” Dr. Carol J. Baker, professor of pediatrics at Baylor College of Medicine and executive director of the Center for Vaccine Awareness in Research at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston, told CNN.

Republished from the New Bern Sun Journal. Distributed by creators.com.

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Chuck Briese, Oak Ridge Now

[avatar user="cbriese" size="thumbnail" align="left"] Chuck Briese has been a resident of South Montgomery County since 1988. He and his lovely and patient wife, Leslie, have six sons, with only one left to finish high school. Chuck has been a Cub Scout leader, a Little League baseball coach, a church youth leader, and a general troublemaker over the course of the past 25 years. He is obsessed with his lawn, and likes restaurants that serve food that fills up the plate. He has a tendency to tilt at windmills, which may explain why he started Oak Ridge Now.

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