top of page
How do Vaccines work?

All information on this page comes from the following resources:


Smiling Baby

What are vaccines made of?

Mother and Baby Lighting a Menorah

Vaccines are made of pieces of killed/inactivated or "living" but weakened germs that cause disease within the body. These pieces are preserved in special ingredients that make the body eager to grab those germs and start learning how to make antibodies against them. Antibodies are like microscopic warriors that help us fight off infections that they recognize from past experience. A vaccine is basically giving the body that "past experience" to memorize without actually making the body feel sick!

The ingredients that are carrying the germ particles are nothing to be afraid off--in fact, they're actually found in common everyday foods and household products! For example, any particular vaccine can contain the same materials that you'd see in Jell-o, antacids (Tums), Aspirin, fabric softener, and dishwasher soap. All of it is safe, effective, and not harmful.

For more information about vaccine contents, please visit:

What happens once a vaccine is injected?

Playing with Wooden Toys
Happy Student

Once the vaccine is injected into your child's arm or leg, it's natural for them to cry--the sensation momentarily surprises them, understandably! Within just a few minutes though, the pain will considerably lessen and they may just be cranky. But inside of them, their cells are hard at work!

First, Antigen-Presenting Cells (APCs) realize that something new has entered the body, and they rush to the source to check it out. They take apart the pieces of the germs in the vaccine and basically "give them as a present" to a new kind of cell, the Helper T cells, so that they can sound the alarm and call all of the other cells of the immune system to look at the new material.

Next, special cells called B cells take the "package" of germs and start to study it so that they can learn all they can about it. These B cells then become either plasma cells or Memory cells--both of these make and share antibodies with the rest of the tissues of the body. And before long, the entire body is well equipped with the antibodies it needs to recognize future infections!

Later on, if your child ever comes across the germs that are active, alive, and dangerous and those germs manage to get inside their body, special cells called Killer T cells (which have studied all the antibodies long and hard) immediately rush through the body and kill all of the germs with specialized methods that ensure that none survive. And the best part--your child doesn't even know their cells are battling anything; they remain happy and playful! It's an amazing process!

Visit this site to see a live-action animation of how vaccines work with the body:

Arms Up
how vax work.jpg

This is an excellent graphic from the Mayo Clinic, published Dec. 2020 (site:

Why are vaccines better than natural immunity?

To put it simply, vaccines give your children the immunity against dangerous diseases. If you were to rely on natural immunity alone, the children would need to actually catch the sickness--this means they're taking on a dangerous disease with no defense system in their body, and they could end up with severe and lasting problems even if they manage to survive the illness.

With vaccines--you can relieve yourself of that concern. Set them on a straighter path that doesn't require them to risk their lives.

Vaccines will not make your child sick. Any reaction they show after injection is normal and can be expected. Their little bodies are hard at work making their own defense system!

For more information about your child's immune system, please visit:

Girl at School

How long do vaccines provide immunity for?

The best news you'll hear all day: vaccines confer nearly lifelong immunity from dangerous diseases!

Most vaccines come in a "series", meaning your child will get one vaccine and then need a "booster shot" a certain amount of time. These booster shots propel the immunity your child is growing into so that that their antibodies grow up with them. 

Imagine your child not having to worry about getting shingles, an excruciating neurologic condition, when they're adults all because they had awesome parents that got them their shots when they were little!

If at any point in life you are concerned about your child "losing" or growing out of immunity, you can always have their blood tested for the antibodies. If there are no antibodies detected, it's no big deal! They just get the shot again and then they're protected. Being safe for life is far worth it.

bottom of page