Prevent PERTUSSIS (whooping cough) Get Vaccinated!
The best way to prevent pertussis among infants, children, teens, and adults is to get vaccinated. Also, keep infants and other people at high risk for pertussis complications away from infected people.
In the United States, the recommended pertussis vaccine for infants and children is called DTaP. This is a combination vaccine that protects against three diseases: diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis.
The childhood whooping cough vaccine (DTaP) protects most children for at least 5 years.
Vaccine protection for these three diseases fades with time. Before 2005, the only booster available contained protection against tetanus and diphtheria (called Td), and was recommended for teens and adults every 10 years. Today there is a booster for preteens, teens and adults that contains protection against tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis (Tdap).
The easiest thing for adults to do is to get Tdap instead of their next regular tetanus booster-that Td shot that they were supposed to get every 10 years. The dose of Tdap can be given earlier than the 10-year mark, so it is a good idea for adults to talk to a healthcare provider about what is best for their specific situation.
Getting vaccinated with Tdap — at least two weeks before coming into close contact with an infant — is especially important for families with and caregivers of new infants
Content source: National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, Division of Bacterial Diseases