There are a host of vaccines we give our infants, we meticulously follow the schedule though that means a dent in our pockets, sleepless nights tending to a wailing baby and we do all this because we believe we are protecting our babies from dreadful disease. But what if vaccinations cause the disease they are meant to protect us against?
A topic that came up for discussion in a Mommy group, something that hadn’t occurred to me earlier, it did seem alarming at the start and I had to find out more about it. What if we all got it wrong?
Here is what I learnt about this contentious topic:
- Vaccines can lead to some mild symptoms resembling the disease against which they provide protection. Vaccination is often followed by mild rashes, fever, dizziness which are normal reactions of the body and they subside gradually. They are not connected to the disease against which one is being immunised.
- One of the things we hear is vaccines contain harmful ingredients. Any substance can be harmful in significantly higher doses. Vaccines contain ingredients at a dose that is even lower than the dose we are naturally exposed to in our environment.
- A medical journal quotes- “Most vaccines are inactivated vaccines and it isn’t possible to contract the disease from the vaccine. A few vaccines contain live organisms, and when vaccinated lead to a mild case of the disease. Chickenpox vaccine, for example, can cause a child to develop a rash, but only with a few spots. This isn’t harmful, and can actually show that the vaccine is working.”
- A scary one I heard and was good to find out that this is a myth- Vaccines do not cause autism. Despite much controversy on the topic, researchers haven’t found a connection between autism and childhood vaccines. In fact, the original study that ignited the debate years ago has been retracted.
- Major side effects of vaccines- As quoted by an article I read on this topic- Although these rare side effects are a concern, the risk of a vaccine causing serious harm or death is extremely small. The benefits of getting a vaccine are much greater than the possible side effects for almost all children. Of course, vaccines aren’t given to children who have known allergies to specific vaccine components. Likewise, if your child develops a life-threatening reaction to a particular vaccine, further doses of that vaccine won’t be given.
It was a relief to debunk these myths around vaccines. As pointed out by many medical experts and journals, the benefits of vaccines far outweigh the risks. Its best to consult your child’s paediatrician and voice your fears if any on this topic, gather all the information from the most reliable source rather than rely on hearsay. After all when it comes to our babies, we always want the best and their safety is of paramount importance.
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