The Great Vaccine Debate

The purpose of vaccines is to prevent people from getting a disease and also to keep a disease from infiltrating a population so that even those with a weak immune system are protected by those around him or her.  This all sounds great, except that these vaccines are not without risk.  Here are my main concerns:

1. If your immune system is directed toward a disease that you may or may not ever come in contact with, then it leaves your immune system with less resources to fight the things that you are actually exposed to.

2. The vaccine doesn’t always prevent the disease it is supposed to.  For example, in the pertussis epidemic in California in 2010 only 9% of the kids with pertussis were unvaccinated.  This means that 91% of the people with pertussis had been fully vaccinated against the disease.  Also, we are seeing an increase in shingles outbreaks in kids vaccinated with the chicken pox vaccine (Chicken pox and shingles are from the same virus).

3.  Some people may be susceptible to nervous system inflammation caused by the vaccine.  This may lead to autism, anxiety, insomnia, and/or ADD/ADHD in previously healthy children.

4. I think that childhood diseases have a purpose in developing our immune system.  The vaccines cause only a small immune response to these viruses and bacteria and we don’t glean the full benefits for the immune system.  This may be part of the reason we are seeing so much more autoimmunity now than we have in the past.

5. Some vaccines like Gardacil (for HPV) are just plain dangerous.  The insert instructs the doctor to observe the patient for seizure activity for 20 minutes after administering the vaccine.   This vaccine will get a blog all to itself….

It is important to weigh out the risks and benefits for each individual child with each vaccine.  If you would like information on the recommended vaccines and the diseases they are targeting, then please follow this link to read about the different childhood vaccines. Then schedule an appointment to discuss your child’s individual risks and benefits for vaccination.

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