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Friday, March 06, 2009

An open letter to paranoid moms everywhere

Hi there all you average mom's who are terrified your kids will get bizarre things like autism and IBS from vaccines.

The more I read, the more frustrated I get. How did so many people get so paranoid?
I have news for you that hopefully will help you listen to us sciency wiency people a bit: Mixed MMR Vaccines are safe. They protect you from disease and prevent epidemics. That MMR triple vaccine to protect against measles, mumps and rubella a doctor linked to autism in children? (Andrew Wakefield (demon I name thee...)) HE ALTERED HIS RESULTS TO SHOW WHAT HE WANTED THEM TO. Yup, he made them up. No they have never been reproduced...not because of a large sample size or interfering big drug companies - it's because it was not true. There is no link.

Ya wanna play in the deep pool with the big science types? Don't make your sh*t up. We hate that.

There will always be someone who reacts to something, and modern vaccines are much safer than previous ones. I say look at the alternative...polio, measles, rubella, hepatitis on a massive scale, infecting the aged and the very young, crippling the strong. By not vaccinating your children you put them (and others!) at risk for dangerous diseases like this. If you're lucky you live somewhere away from a random outbreak of them and your kids will have a fab immune system - if not...well have a look at the ravages of polio and measles. It's not pretty. Some children may have adverse reactions to things...but I say, ask for better vaccines. Listen to your body. Don't deprive your children of, what is in my mind, a necessary thing.

Be smart. Do your research. Talk to your doctor. Don't just listen to talk shows and celebrities (like Jeni Barnett...boourns)- I feel silly even having to be stating this but they aren't doctors. There is no medical conspiracy to force you to be vaccinated for some sinister financial or physical gain. Want to know more? Missprism has a good post here. And also, take the medical field's info with a grain of salt. Use the brain your mamma gave you. Calculated risk? I say it is necessary. But I also say this: if your child appears to be a rare person who has a severe allergic reaction to a medication or a vaccine talk with your family doctor about it...everyone is unique. It is possible. There are alternatives. Use them.

Vaccines safe lives. If I were you I'd be far more concerned about all the processed crap you eat...THAT sh*t will kill you far quicker...


Soapbox awaaaaaaay!!!

7 comments:

Magnus said...

That you psoted this isn't a surprise, I know you. What I want to know is why now? What provoked you?

the Bag Lady said...

We have a neighbour who refuses to vaccinate her children.
She has 8, and will probably have more, because she is using God for birth control. (He will tell her when to stop having children.)
He will also protect her children from polio, etc.
She also believes that vaccines carry the AIDS virus. It's a government conspiracy, you know.
Okey dokey.

solarity said...

When I was in kindergarten (1958) one of the boys in our class had just lost his older sister from measles. You don't forget that.

(Bag Lady, I think your neighbour needs a spiritual hearing aid...)

Mary Anne in Kentucky

Captain Chlorophyll said...

One of my aunts was mentally impaired by childhood measles, and her son was autistic before he got vaccinated. So there.

Captain Chlorophyll said...

Sorry for re-commenting, but I just read the Times link and have to comment.

Twelve? A respected medical journal published a report of an unreplicated observation of twelve cases? Sheesh.

Pacian said...

The other day, I found myself reading this post on Ben Goldacre's blog. Goldacre argues that as slimy and immoral as Wakefield was, he only managed to create panic due to consistent bias from the media.

"Vaccines are safe and do what you thought they did" is not a headline that sells papers.

Geosomin said...

Magnus - just read yet another article about it and had to get my annoyance off my chest.

Bag Lady - wow...I'm always concerned about people who are that way about their kids. We have a healthy culture to live in thanks to vaccines. We don't live in a time where they ravage our cities (well not on this side of the globe anyways) so it's easy to think we don't need them anymore...

Solarity - I'm glad there are those like you who still remember and can help us understand why we need these vaccines so much.

Captain C - Yeah. I know. What was probably a small article on 12 isolated cases has been taken way out of proportion and linked to a grea tmany scaremongering ideas. Published in the Lancet no doubt.

Pacian - thanks for the link - that was really interesting. It brought up a lot of things I hadn't thought about. It angers me that news has turned into "*insert horror here* will kill you-here's how!"...paranoia building things...not necessarily facts or information. The press does a terrible job of taking tiny bits of info and making them into large paranoia inducing threats - all for the story and the 5 minutes of coverage. I think I'm going to have to track down this guys book and have a read. There needs to be more intelligently written relatively unbiased scientific discussion. I'm jsut as guilty as the rest as ranting off on topics...I just hope I"m clear that my rants are opinion, not dogma fact...