The CDC recommends that both boys and girls at age 11 or 12 receive the HPV vaccine to prevent cancers caused by Human Papillomavirus, a common virus in both women and men.
HPV vaccines offer the best protection to girls and boys who receive all three vaccine doses and have time to develop an immune response before they begin sexual activity with another person. This is not to say that your preteen is ready to have sex. In fact, it's just the opposite-it's important to get your child protected before you or your child ever think about this issue. The immune response to this vaccine is better in preteens, and this could mean better protection for your child.
If you haven't already vaccinated your sons (and daughters!), it's not too late. Ask your child's doctor at any appointment about getting HPV vaccine. The series is 3 shots over six months' time. Take advantage of any visit to the doctor-such as an annual health checkup or physicals for sports, camp, or college-to ask the doctor about what shots your preteens and teens need.
Click here for more information about the HPV vaccine and CDC recommendations for boys and girls.
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