Thoughts for vaccinating a child

by AJ on November 14, 2016 - 9:01pm

    Most people are very familiar with vaccinations; whether they have children that were vaccinated at birth, they remember themselves vaccinated or someone they know being vaccinated. It is a typical that the majority of people have received vaccines because, this is what we have been taught to be the best practice. There have been many requirements throughout the world, requiring students to be vaccinated to attend school. Jie Jenny Zou and Roger Miller wrote the article, “Increasing number of New York school children skipping vaccinations” stating that, “More than 22,000 medical and religious exemptions were granted to students for the 2013-14 school year, up 27 percent from 2010-11, according to the state Health Department.” There have also been numerous studies to see if vaccinations have a link to children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. The website VaccineDecision.info wrote the article, “Vaccines and Autism” this article states, “The U.S. government has compensated families for children in whom it has been determined that vaccines were the cause of autism. Still the government denies that vaccines cause autism.” Along with this, there are new statements saying that the higher the rate of vaccinations, the larger the infant death rate is. Dr. Mercola wrote the article, “UK Scraps Pneumonia Vaccines Because They “Don’t Work’” which states, “The United States requires infants to receive 26 vaccines (the most in the world) yet more than 6 U.S. infants die per every 1,000 live births. In contrast, Sweden and Japan administer 12 vaccines to infants, the least amount, and report less than 3 deaths per 1,000 live births.” Are vaccines helping children, or are they doing more harm than good?

     With all this new information about vaccinations arising, it is important to take intoconsideration the effects that vaccines have on children. Most schools require children tobe current on the recommended vaccination schedule. The exceptions are if they are religiously or medically exempt, where many parents are using this as a way of not vaccinating their children. Zou and Miller state, “The study also noted that 34 of the 62 New York counties reported high increases in religious exemption rates. Nationally, exemption rates have remained relatively stable until recent years, the authors added.” This information shows that parents are choosing not to vaccinate their children in New York State due to the possible risks, which is being seen more and more. One of the risks that may be associated with vaccinations is Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The question if vaccines play a role in Autism has been a hot topic for a while. There is no firm confirmation if the two are linked or not. Parents and care givers still fear the uncertainty. They are unsure on whether to or not to vaccinate their children due to the adverse effects. This brings up a statement from the article “Vaccines and Autism”. This article stated that, “So why are there those that are so anxious to close the door on the possibility of a vaccine/autism connection? The answer is somewhat obvious, in that if there is a connection it would mean a lot less people wanting to give their children vaccinations. This was just the case in Europe, where vaccination rates decreased due to concerns with the MMR vaccine/ autism connection.” This is the case though, even without accurate data linking autism to vaccines, parents are still skeptical on vaccinating their children. Another risk of vaccinating children that many parents are concerned of, is the rise of infant deaths with the increase of vaccinations. Dr. Mercola stated, “Zimbabwe’s infant mortality rate tripled between 1990 and 2010 – when the most vaccines were added to their vaccination schedule!” While there is no data that has been proven to be completely accurate these are still issues that one must consider.

     Many more risks and benefits will arise from the use of vaccinations as time goes on. A major risk associated with vaccinations is parents choosing not to vaccinate their children due to possible adverse reactions, may cause an outbreak of a disease. The risk long term changes in the child’s developmental milestones, due to vaccinations, have caregivers questioning what is better for their child. The increased risk of infant death syndrome where there are increase in immunizations brings concern to all families facing the debate of having immunizations administered on schedule. These risks associated with vaccinations make it an important decision to consider when vaccinating your children.

 

Citations

Mercola, Dr. J., (2011). UK Scraps Pneumonia Vaccines Because They ‘Don’t Work’. Health

Impact News. Retrieved from http://healthimpactnews.com/2011/studies-show-that-the-countries-with-the-most-vaccines-have-the-worst-infant-death-rate/

Vaccine and Autism. (2011, May). VaccineDecision.Info. Retrieved from

            http://www.vaccinedecision.info/cgi-bin/viewcontent.cgi?article_id=41

Zou, J., Miller, R., (2015, January). Increasing Number of New York school

            Children Skipping Vaccinations. The New York World. Retrieved from             http://www.thenewyorkworld.com/2015/01/29/vaccine

Comments

Hi AJ,

I enjoy reading your post. I decided to read your article for personal relativeness. I myself was vaccinated as a child and one of my best friends was not. Between the two of us there has be friendly discussion as to whether or not our children should be vaccinated when we get to that stage in our lives. I liked how throughout your blog post you accompanied your points with facts. I felt that this strengthened your topic and provided the reader with greater knowledge in regards to the topic you discussed. One piece of constructive criticism I have for you would be to have a read through your post before submitting. There were a few run on sentences, typos and spelling errors. I feel if you take the time to carefully read through your post before submitting you will only benefit and strength your post.

Below I have included a link to an article that I think provides great contrast to your post. This article particularly focuses on trying to get parents to focus on potential consequences of not getting their child vaccinated. They want to shift anti-vaccine parents from focusing on the “supposed” risks of their child getting autism as a result of getting their shots. It is hoped that by showing parents the risks they are putting their child in by not getting their vaccine will increase the number of children receiving their shots.

One thought I had while reading your post and other similar articles is that it would be worth seeing if there are any direct studies or cases where there is scientific proof that vaccinations caused a child to have autism.

Great post!

Logan Mercier

Article link: http://globalnews.ca/news/2146283/how-to-convince-skeptical-parents-that...

Good afternoon, your post was very well organized and you did a good job at bringing in information from the article in the beginning of the post and also near the closing of the post. I also really liked how you brought in statistics from other parts of the world but you were still able to tie it into your point and explain how the information was significant to the topic.

Two years ago I actually took a course that was meant to de-bunk the vaccinations cause autism debate. After taking the course I can honestly say that I am 100% for vaccinations. One really great stat that you threw in was how a European country gives their children 12 vaccines and American countries give their children 26 vaccines BUT the children from Europe were no less healthy and were maybe even healthier. This is another really important point that brings to light that maybe North American is over vaccinating their children.
I find over vaccinating children a more engaging debate because there is likely more science behind both sides compared to the vaccinations causing autism debate. I think over vaccinating children could be a sexy topic. If I had children I would support them being vaccinated but 26 vaccinations for a baby seems like a little over excessive. There may also be many vaccines out there that are considered to be overkill or possibly not even very effective.
Overall I definitely do agree that there is two sides to the question of vaccinating your child or not. At the end of the day, there are many vaccines out there that are very important for children to get in their development stages but there are also likely some vaccines that really are not that detrimental. In the end, I think I would still rather be safe than sorry and get my child vaccinated SO LONG AS THE VACCINE IS PROVEN EFFECTIVE AND WELL TESTED.

Great choice of topic and insight!
Felicity

Hi AJ,

A very well written and interesting topic to write a response to!

The topic of vaccinations is very two sided with responsible evidence being presented on both sides. I really appreciated that you backed your argument up with evidence. I was not aware that vaccinations had so many linkages to other disorders and thank you for bringing that to my attention. While I understand that vaccinations in some cases are necessary, especially for children that may not have the strongest immune systems due to other pre-disposed conditions, I feel as though not all of the required immunizations are necessary.

For the most part, some of the vaccinations that are required seem to be slightly excessive with a large amount being for diseases and illnesses that are no longer an issue in modern, first-world societies or that are preventable or unlikely to be encountered. On the other hand there are cases were being vaccinated is not necessarily a bad thing for those few random cases where someone does come into contact with the illness.

Personally, I am un-vaccinated. I received my shots as a baby but never got any boosters. I can tell you first hand that it is really terrifying to be facing the thought of suspension, especially as a kid that loved every minute of going to school. There were some cases were numerous classmates told me I would be suspended. My mother signed a doctor’s note saying that I didn’t need my shots (for no reason other than that she didn’t believe in them) but still no one believed me. Luckily, nothing came out of it but it really is not enjoyable to be facing that situation and I don’t think it is fair that schools are putting so much pressure on children to have their vaccinations with the result of suspension.

I am honestly one of the healthiest people I know and I haven’t been vaccinated. I’ve never had the flu, rarely get sick other than the occasional cold, never been injured or even had a trip to a hospital other than an non-dangerous allergic reaction. However, I am still very conflicted on this subject. I’m unsure what I would do when faced with the decision of vaccinating my children. I can see the benefits but as a healthy individual who is perfectly fine without them, I question if they are necessary.

Once again, thank you for writing a great post! It really added to my conflict of what is the right answer but it definitely added some scientific backing to both sides of the argument in my mind.

hey,
To start this off i really enjoyed reading your post, it was very well written and you provided a substantial amount of valuable and interesting information that made it for me as a reader very enjoyable to read. I think its extremely important that you mentioned both positive and negative implications from vaccines to come into the future with use and lack of use. I also liked how you added the parents response to vaccinating their children i wonder how the shift would be if you compared the numbers between parents who in a sense lived in a time where medicine wasn't always the answer due to its uncertainties, who has decided for their children not to be vaccinated and younge adults to adults deciding to vaccinate themselves in the future.

I think situations like this where the general public have an uproar of concerns on an issue truly stems from media coverage on the topic, and the media portraying some side affects making it seem like if you give your child this vaccine that child is automatically going to get one of these side effects. For some people seeing the media portray it in this light seems absolutely absurd but not everyone has the same thought process and whether it being conscious or a subconscious decision parents seeing these possibilities their human instincts of survival kick in and they decide to opt out in an attempt to avoid these possible side effects. I think an effective way to go about increasing the public image and increasing the amount of parents vaccinating their children would be get a hold of the media and develop a discourse that the public can get behind regarding the usefulness of vaccines and how your better off receiving one then opting out of it. what would you suggest is the most effective way for going about this?

Hey AJ! I was intrigued by your topic because I’m always seeing posts about this on Facebook. It appears this topic has sparked quite the controversy! I usually don’t comment or get involved because I don’t have children and I’m honestly not very educated on the topic.

Your post was extremely informative on the topic, particularly on the negative views on vaccinations. I still don’t really know where I stand on this topic. I’m not exactly sure what vaccinations I got as a child but I do remember that dreadful day every winter where I had to get my flu shot. I haven’t had a flu shot in an extremely long time, and I honestly rarely get the flu in the winter (however, I do sometimes get the flu in the summer??). I do question how effective that vaccination is.

After reading your post and doing some further research, I think it may be a little irresponsible to not have your child vaccinated for the basics (measles, whooping cough, etc). These diseases can cause death to a child, so why risk it? I think parents should be focusing on the statistics showing the positive impacts of vaccinations. If there is no evidence linking autism to vaccinations, I don’t think anyone should be jumping to conclusions. Personally, I don’t think I would want to take the risk of not vaccinating my child. But I guess I’ll cross that bridge when I get to it. If you’re interested in looking at some reasons as to why parents should vaccinate either child, check out the link below.

http://www.vaccineinformation.org/vaccines-save-lives/

Hey AJ! I was intrigued by your topic because I’m always seeing posts about this on Facebook. It appears this topic has sparked quite the controversy! I usually don’t comment or get involved because I don’t have children and I’m honestly not very educated on the topic.

Your post was extremely informative on the topic, particularly on the negative views on vaccinations. I still don’t really know where I stand on this topic. I’m not exactly sure what vaccinations I got as a child but I do remember that dreadful day every winter where I had to get my flu shot. I haven’t had a flu shot in an extremely long time, and I honestly rarely get the flu in the winter (however, I do sometimes get the flu in the summer??). I do question how effective that vaccination is.

After reading your post and doing some further research, I think it may be a little irresponsible to not have your child vaccinated for the basics (measles, whooping cough, etc). These diseases can cause death to a child, so why risk it? I think parents should be focusing on the statistics showing the positive impacts of vaccinations. If there is no evidence linking autism to vaccinations, I don’t think anyone should be jumping to conclusions. Personally, I don’t think I would want to take the risk of not vaccinating my child. But I guess I’ll cross that bridge when I get to it. If you’re interested in looking at some reasons as to why parents should vaccinate either child, check out the link below.

http://www.vaccineinformation.org/vaccines-save-lives/

Hi AJ,

Great post! I thought you provided some great information and thought invoking ideas.
I believe that there are many mixed reviews on vaccinating children. On one hand, they can be great because it can protect children and those around them, but at the same time, as you eluded to in your post, these increased numbers of vaccinations could also be the cause of higher infant deaths and ASD.

Until there is more concrete research to say whether vaccines are in fact better than none at all, there is going to be controversy over it. As an example, there is much debate on getting the flu shot or not. In my own experience, I never received the flu shot on my doctor’s recommendations because he deemed it unnecessary for we need to allow our own bodies to fight against the virus and build an immunity to it. As a result, I have never gotten the flu, although others are still strong advocators for the flu shot. Similar debates can be made about the numerous other shots that we seem to be required to receive.

It will be interesting to see where these debates lead us and just how important and necessary these vaccines are.

Emily

Interesting post AJ!

Your post caught my eye as I have always been skeptical of vaccinations. I am definitely terrified of needles. In school, I was so difficult with teachers when I learned that vaccinations were mandatory. I am very intrigued by this theory that Autism has been linked to vaccinations however, I would like to see more evidence for this. My reasons for being skeptical of vaccinations are not because of what i have heard, but because of what I am unaware of. I do not know what is in the vaccinations, which makes me weary because I do not want to inject myself with unknown substances. I wonder if other parents feel the same as me or if they are mainly concerned about the potential adverse effects that you have mentioned. Maybe it is also possible that parents are upset about not being in charge of decisions that affect their children. Do you think that parents should be able to make the decision for vaccinating their child? Or do you think it is more efficient for a legal authority to enforce vaccinations at a young age, considering the potential risks that society could face from large numbers of individuals being vulnerable to harmful disease?

As far as vaccinations go, it might also be interesting to hear about the controversy over flu shots. These shots are not mandatory but, are heavily promoted.

Hey,
I really enjoyed your post! As it is the middle of flu season in Ontario, I found myself drawn to your article. I recently myself was debating over getting the flu shot and was thinking about the social benefits that vaccinations have in disease prevention. I think you did an amazing job at a multiple perspective analysis and like how you formatted your article by stating sides against vaccination and then with evidence or opinion against anti-vaccination. I found that a really enjoyable read. I think that vaccinations are pretty controversial because of the conflicting amount of different information and data put out about the effects of vaccinations. I think you did a good job of talking through the controversy and showing both sides evenly. There isn't much to improve on your article because its so well written, but maybe personally stating your opinion on vaccinations would be a nice conclusion.

Hey Aj,

I really enjoyed reading your post as it focuses on a perspective which differs from my own. I myself am all for vaccinations for children, and don't understand why one would choose not to (other than for medical reasons). There are several more proven consequences of avoiding vaccinations, than there are for getting them. Yes, there is the fear of autism, but there is no medical study to back up the claim. One of the big reasons for the claim where vaccines cause autism is because the signs for autism start to show at the same time that children receive many of their vaccines, but just because they happen at the same time, doesn't mean that one caused the other.

One thing that I would like to comment about is your spelling and grammar, just make sure that next time you double check your post and maybe also get someone else to read it over for you. Other than that your post was very well done!

Here's a link with a different opinion on the topic, hope you enjoy it.
http://www.caresquad.com/child-care/articles/child-health-safety/why-do-...

Hey AJ, great topic! I wanted to check it out as this is an increasingly controversial issue that always seems to get swept under the rug. This was a very interesting post to read as personally, I have heard of a few situations within my own community where a person suffered health issues potentially caused by receiving a vaccine. On the other hand, from what I know about vaccines they do make sense and I'm sure they are effective otherwise the government would not make them mandatory for school children. That being said, vaccinations potentially causing Autism Spectrum Disorder could be quite a serious health issue. I don't ever think that vaccinations will stop completely, even with these health concerns. With the United States 26 infant vaccines, even if it were found one of them was causing autism, the vast majority are most likely completely safe. In the end, we are all genetically different and respond differently to foods and medicines. It could be that those few potentially being affected negatively by vaccinations all have a similar genetic abnormality causing the adverse reaction. Either way, it sounds like much more research needs to be done on the subject before any conclusions can be made.

Hi there,
I really enjoyed reading your post, a lot of what you wrote about is news to me! When I was growing up, and even now still, I always dread the idea of going to get a vaccine but this is because I'm really not a fan of needles in general. If I were a parent or caregiver and heard this news, I would feel pretty uneasy having to make the decision as to whether I should vaccinate my child or not. Overall, the main problem is uncertainty. Whenever there is uncertainty in an issue, chaos will soon follow it. The fact that we are unsure as to whether or not vaccines are linked to Autism Spectrum Disorder or whether or not more vaccines leads to higher infant mortality is the reason for all this debate. If there was a known statistic of the chance of higher mortality with a certain number of vaccines, I think that people would be more calm about the situation because they would be able to make their decision backed up on hard facts. Unfortunately we do not seem to have these concrete facts yet, and so in the meantime, I encourage you to continue to researching for new studies that can support this debate for your writing. Great job!
Cheers!

Hey AJ!

This was a very neat post to read, as it is from a perspective that I am not accustomed to seeing. Here in Canada (specifically Southern Ontario), we too have required vaccinations starting at a young age, but there is far less argument against it in comparison to the United States. That's not to say we don't have people here who do not vaccinate, but it is just not as common, considering everyone I know is in support of vaccination (as such, this is just an assumption, and every province is different).

I think your post was very well written, and makes excellent use of the articles supporting this stance on vaccination. Vaccination is a complicated issue, and there is definitely a lot of controversy around it. The issue at hand is that the sciences, unlike political decision making processes, are not so black and white. One of the main reasons why there is so much misunderstanding from the general public towards science is because science evolves and changes, and it is difficult to say something is 100% true through scientific literature. It is only possible to discuss your findings, and give a reasonable conclusion. If your findings are convincing, and multiple studies have the same results, then it is more likely for something to become accepted as scientific fact. This is also where the confusion of the word "theory" stems from. In the public, people say scientists are not sure because it is only just a "theory", but that does not mean it is a guess. Even a concept like gravity is a theory.

Now the reason why it is important to discuss these issues is because one of the major struggles in the scientific community is trying to express your research to the general public in a way that can be absorbed. So when it comes to vaccination, it is understandable why so many people are skeptical of the idea. A major thing to remember however, is that correlation does not equal causation. I recall from my statistics lectures that 60% of cancer cases are random. That means almost two thirds of all cancer cases cannot be linked to any cause at all. Even more ridiculously, something odd like "potato chip sales" was strongly correlated with "highway accidents" (you can look up odd correlations on google, and many many results will show up!). This can also be compared to Autism, where scientists are still puzzled as to what the cause is. It is up to the public then to decide what is more important: vaccinate and have a very high immunity to a preventable disease, or not vaccinate because of a slim chance (if at all) that there are side affects? There is also an underlying moral issue at play here, where people have to decide whether a preventable disease is worse than autism or not.

I really enjoy posts like yours because they are about important current issues that have so much uncertainty around them, and revolve heavily on education, science, and public opinion. Sparking discussion is one of the most valuable things that academia has to offer! Thank you, and keep up the great work!

Hi AJ!

Thanks for your post, it was an interesting read! I think you touch upon a pressing issue being the vaccinations of children. It is extremely important for parents to vaccinate their children when they are newborns. Those who believe in homeopathy and Scientology have in some instances believed that their children do not need vaccinations, which has led to the death of the child and charges being pressed against the parents.

It is so critical that we are aware of the breakthroughs in science and what are considered to be the norms as far as healthcare and health of children and adults. There are just some things that can't be toyed with, as it's not worth a life.

Thanks for your input, let me know what you think :)

Davis

Good Post AJ,

I thought this was really interesting and that you did a great job of outlining the issue. I thought that you had a good use of descripitive language and that you're writing style really helped to grab the readers attention. I thought you were very informative in your discussion regarding the risks of vaccinating versus not vaccinating. I think that I would definitely vaccinate my child.

Cheers,

Newsbot