Our body is designed to respond to a large amount of antigens. It has been calculated, for example, that ten vaccines administered simultaneously to a child (actually we administer less) would use up a thousandth of his immune system. The same goes for the elderly, with the difference that their immune system is less ready than that of a young person, which is why higher doses or the use of adjuvants are sometimes used, without increasing the side effects of vaccines . Therefore, the risk of “exaggerating with vaccines”, i.e. overloading the immune system, does not exist. You run the risk of doing something, not harmful, but useless only when you vaccinate yourself against a disease in the absence of a risk.
Vaccines, despite being among the most controlled and safest medicines, are still medicines, and as such they can have some side effects, although they are among those that register the least.
In this regard, vaccination againsttick-borne encephalitis it is certainly appropriate if you live in regions with a high diffusion of the tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBE), such as Friuli Venezia Giulia or Trentino Alto Adige. While he certainly did well to get vaccinated against Covid and to carry out the booster dosesagainst it pneumococcus – also considering how the risk of related diseases and the severity of the disease increase exponentially after the age of 50-60 – and against theshinglesindicated above 50 years.
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*Paolo Bonanni is Professor of Hygiene at the University of Florence and Director of the Department of Health Sciences