×
Book Appointment Online with select physicians.
Request Appointment Online to schedule with one of our coordinators.
1.888.IUHEALTH for
Same-Day Primary Care Appointments.
If you are experiencing a medical emergency, please call 9-1-1.

Why Your Teenager Needs to Get an HPV Shot

If you have a daughter or son who is entering their teen years, you need to make sure they get either a Cervarix or Gardasil HPV shot (Gardasil is the only HPV shot recommended for males and the only one that prevents genital warts). What is HPV? HPV, or Human Papillomavirus is a sexually transmitted infection spread by skin-to-skin contact. HPV can cause various oral and anogenital cancers in men and women, including virtually all cervical cancers. Most people who have HPV do not even know they have it.

Who Has HPV?

HPV is actually the most common sexually transmitted infection in the United States. 20 million Americans between 15 and 49 have HPV. Over half of all sexually active adults will get genital HPV at one point or another. Because the infection is usually dealt with fairly easily by the immune system, many people who get HPV never know they have it.

Vaccination Means Less Worry

You can’t eliminate all of the risks a teen might face in their life. The HPV vaccine won’t completely eliminate your child’s chance of infection but it will drastically reduce that risk, giving you less reason to worry. Even if your daughter or son does not have sex until marriage, they still can get infected with HPV, so the vaccine is for everyone.

When You Need to Get Your Child Vaccinated Against HPV

Vaccination drastically reduces the risk that HPV will develop into cervical and other cancers and genital warts (with the Gardasil vaccine). HPV vaccine is routinely recommended for all 11 and 12 year olds because it is important to protect them well before they are exposed to HPV and the vaccine has a stronger effect at these ages, compared to older adolescents.

When your child enters middle school, ask your primary care physician about the HPV vaccine, as it can be administered at the same time as the other recommended vaccines, meningococcal and pertussis. If your children are a little older, but still not vaccinated, do not worry. It can still be administered up to the age of 26.

Viewing all posts in …

Other Blog Posts That May Interest You

Blog RSV: Can Look Like a Cold But More Serious

RSV: Can Look Like a Cold But More Serious

Family Care

Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a common childhood illness that usually only causes symptoms...

Continue reading
Blog

When to Call the Doctor About Your Child's Cold or Flu

Family Care

Fall is in full swing, which means some children will start missing school because of colds and...

Continue reading
Blog Improve Your Child’s Sleep Quality

Improve Your Child’s Sleep Quality

Family Care

The excitement of the holidays can make it tough for a lot of us to fall asleep at night, especially...

Continue reading

Viewing all posts in …