To battle deadly and potentially life-threatening diseases, scientists create vaccines/vaccinations that can prevent a virus from causing damage to your organs, blood stream, and muscles. The vaccines include a shot or a series of shots that can be given to a patient by a medical professional.
Vaccines can be used to prevent the spread of disease among children, adults, and the elderly. Vaccinations are especially useful for soldiers and missionaries who often travel to poverty stricken countries where some deadly viruses have not been eradicated.
To give a person a vaccine, the administration site (location on the body where the shot will be given) is sterilized with either an alcohol solution or iodine, the vial of medicine is attached to or placed into a syringe, and then the syringe is tapped to ensure there is no air bubble that can be injected with the medication.
Air bubbles can cause harm to a person if injected into a vein. Normally, a small amount of the vaccine is squirted out of the needle to reduce even a tiny chance of an air bubble.
There are five types of vaccinations that are commonly used throughout the world.
These vaccines are
An inactivated vaccine. This type of vaccine uses a dead strain of the virus. The dead virus is injected into a person’s body to create antibodies (cells that remain in the blood stream that can kill off any living virus cells that enter the body.) Polio and Typhoid are two vaccines utilizing dead viral cells.
Live vaccines. Live vaccines are created by using a living, yet weakened, strain of the virus. The virus is too weak to cause an active infection, but it can help the body create antibodies to that specific virus. Measles, mumps, and rubella vaccinations use live virus cells.
Subunit vaccines use sterilized portions of the virus. The sterilized pieces of the virus are injected into the body to create antibodies. The vaccinations for Hepatitis B and HIB (Haemophilus Influenzae) are subunit vaccines.
Toxoid vaccines take the virus and use chemical measures or alter the genes to create a safe version of the viral cells. Those cells can then be injected to help create antibodies. Diphtheria and tetanus are examples of Toxoid vaccines.
Finally, Naked DNA vaccines create antibodies by injecting a person with a specific strand of the virus’s DNA. The body then attacks that strand creating a defensive antibody for any future infection. Malaria and Dengue Fever are common Naked DNA vaccines.