Shot Came As Surpise to Some Seventh-Graders

Many 7th students thought that they were done with vaccines until they found out they were required to get another before entering school this year. For some, this came as a big surprise.

“It scared me at first, but I knew, in the end, it would help me,” said  Lily Grace Huddeltson A 7th grader. “I am glad I got it.”

Saluda Trail’s Nurse Bailey said the Tdap Vaccine helps protects students from serious diseases.

In the state of South Carolina, all 7th graders are required to have a Tdap vaccine. Saluda Trail Middle School Nurse Chante Bailey said this vaccine protects students against three very serious diseases – tetanus, diphtheria and acelluar pertussis (whooping cough).  

“The Tdap shot was new to me, so I did not know whether it would help me or not,” said Tavion Grissitte. “I  am glad I got it because even if I did not know what it was it could help me not be sick,” he said.

Babies and little kids get aDTaP shot to protect them from diphtheria, tetanus, adn pertussis (whooping cough), but it wears off when they get older which causes pre-teens and teenagers to be at risk. Because of this, many states including South Carolina and North Carolina require this booster shot. According to the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control, the requirement for the vaccine began during the 2013-14 school year. This is the 6th school year that the requirement has been in effect. All students in public and private schools must have this vaccine.

Nurse Bailey said there are currently 271 7th graders at Saluda Trail this school year.

Although Nurse Bailey said she hasn’t seen anyone with any of these diseases as of yet, she said “I think that everyone should get the vaccine. The vaccine protects you from getting P.W.T.” Nurse Bailey said students could get the vaccine from their family doctor or health department.  

“Most insurance pays for the vaccine,” she added. The cost of the vaccine could be $110 to $120 without insurance.

Nurse Bailey said the diseases that the vaccine protects from are very serious. They can cause everything from muscle spasms to infections. For example, Tetanus is a disease that causes a serious bacterial infection that causes painful muscle spasms and can lead to death. Diphtheria is a disease that is a serious infection of the nose and throat. Pertussis (Whooping Cough)  is a highly contagious respiratory tract infection. It can cause a bad cough that makes someone gasp for air after coughing fits.

Although some students find shots to be scary, the CDC and the American Academy of Family Physicians say the shot has been studied carefully and is safe.

One side effect from the shot can be soreness in the arm. However, health officials say the benefits outweigh the side effects.

There are, however, some side effects. Those are redness, soreness in the arm where the shot was given, headache, fever, or tiredness.

The benefits, health professionals say, outweigh the side effects. “All and all,  the Tdap vaccine is a very good vaccine and protects from very serious diseases,”  said Nurse Bailey.


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