Why should I protect my child from HPV?

Dear friends, we have been dealing with an incredible number of health problems over the last two years, we are still living – in a global pandemic. But since the beginning of the “crown of crisis”, many other pension issues have been a bit lost.

However, because I know that many parents of children aged 9 to 17 also read here, we would like to focus on HPV again today. HPV stands for human papillomavirus, which can cause certain types of cancer in adult girls and boys. Preventive measures and vaccinations from the age of 9 may be the best prevention.

Specific Cancers caused by HP viruses

After all, about 7,850 people in Germany develop cancer every year that can be traced back to HP viruses. So the older our children get, we should also think about and talk about it. Our little ones are growing up faster than we can ever believe …

… and with age, not only the embarrassment of parents and no mood, but even more so health care, comes to the table. Whether the pediatrician is dealing with it, whether in practice hang posters about possible vaccinations against HPV or be discussed in the schoolyard.

Today, we would like to address this topic in detail again. Because HPV vaccination cannot protect against all HP viruses
It protects against diseases, but can prevent cervical cancer and vaginal cancer in girls or rectal cancer in boys and girls.

Human papillomaviruses and their impact

Today we would like to give you a clear overview of the most important facts about human papillomaviruses, so that we can perhaps even help you decide what preventive measures are appropriate for you as parents for your children or not.

HPV: why prevention is so important

Background: About 85-90 percent of all people become infected with HPV during their lifetime. Infection with so-called low-risk types of HPV can cause benign warts. However, persistent infections with so-called high-risk HPV types can cause cellular changes that can develop into certain types of cancer. The risk of possible consequences of human papillomavirus infection, such as some of the resulting cancers, can be significantly reduced by vaccination and preventive medical examinations.

How do you get an HP virus?

HP viruses are transmitted through direct human-to-human contact. Like I said, most people get it during their lifetime. Viruses can enter the body despite the slightest injury to the skin or mucous membranes, especially through intimate physical contact.

What diseases can HP viruses cause?

Cervical cancer is the fourth most common cancer in women worldwide. Cervical cancer is almost 100% caused by some HP viruses. In men, HP viruses mainly cause tumors in the mouth, throat, genitals and anal area.

Girls and boys can develop genital warts and HPV-related cancer later in life. Both women and men have cancer of the mouth and throat.

How does HPV infection work?

HPV infection often goes unnoticed at first because it is usually asymptomatic. In most cases, the infection is cured within about a year without any health problems. Only: If HPV infection lasts longer, it can lead to cellular changes in the mucous membranes or skin – and some people may develop a precancerous lesion or cancer.

What does STIKO recommend?

Vaccination is one of the most important preventive measures. The Standing Vaccination Commission (STIKO) at the Robert Koch Institute recommends HPV vaccination for boys and girls aged 9 to 14 years. If possible, vaccination should be given between the ages of 9 and 14, but no later than the 17th year (no later than the day before the 18th birthday).

Depending on the vaccine used, HPV vaccination is used to prevent certain diseases that are caused by certain types of HPV, such as: precancerous lesions and cancer of the cervix, external female genitalia (vulva), vagina (vagina) and anus (anus) and genital warts.

HPV vaccination: the most important facts

For everyone who decides to vaccinate their children, we bring you an overview of the most important facts.

At what age should I get vaccinated against HPV?

STIKO recommends early vaccination of boys and girls. It can be vaccinated from the age of 9, ie before a possible HPV infection. In addition, the younger the vaccinated person, the better the immune system responds to the vaccination. In addition, the vaccine can be given in two doses until the day before your 15th birthday, after which three doses are needed.

How many vaccinations are needed and when?

Girls and boys up to and including 14 years of age receive doses of the vaccine in two single vaccinations at least five months apart. From 15 years onwards and if the vaccination interval is too short, three individual vaccinations are planned.

Why should girls and boys be vaccinated?

Potential diseases caused by HP viruses can affect both sexes equally. The HPV vaccines recommended for prevention in boys are the same as in girls.

Who pays for HPV vaccination?

For girls and boys aged 9 to 17, HPV vaccination is covered by statutory and, as a rule, private health insurance companies. Some health insurance companies even cover the cost of vaccinating young people over the age of 18.

So that was a lot of facts and a lot of contributions. If you still have any questions, you can of course ask your pediatrician first
You can also call your health insurance company and ask. In addition, state or reputable institutions, such as the Robert Koch Institute,
The Federal Center for Health Education or the German Cancer Research Center provide good information on this topic – for anyone who would like to read more deeply.

Lisa Harmann

Lisa Harmann has always been curious in every way. She works as a journalist, author and blogger, has three children and lives in Bergisch near Cologne.

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