Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Autism vs. Vaccines

So, what is your take?

I was just reading my Mothering magazine (www.mothering.com ) and they have a great article in there about the actual cost of a child having autism. And they always have little blurbs about vaccines containing mercury and the autism link. It is a great magazine...you should really check it out...but anyway...

We selectively vaccinate. We don't do it because of the autism fear, we do it because we think it is asking way too much of a 2 month old baby's body to handle the invasion of 5+ innoculations at one time. And I personally believe there is a link with autism and vaccines, along with a genetic predisposition. Put the two together, bad things happen. We started out with Jonathan wanting him to be fully vaccinated. Here I was, a young mom with a newborn that had all sorts of issues, the last thing I wanted was for him to get sick. And the things they tell you if you choose not to vaccinate...JEEZ! They make it seem like you are abusing your child for not sticking them with hundreds of needles! We were told we couldn't do certain vaccines due to a seizure risk...hhhhhmmmm. Talk about frightening! I just got my newborn to stop seizing, you tell me all the risks and harm that can happen to him if I don't vaccinate, and then you tell me "oh wait, we can't give him that one because it has the possible side effect of seizures" Thanks but no thanks. I started doing a bit more research and vaccinating him slowly.

Fast forward to Jacob...my second baby in the NICU. This trip wasn't nearly as bad as our trip with Jonathan, but I knew that I didn't want him poked and poked and poked some more. But once again, I felt a little bullied. And then with Jacobs GI issues and food allergies, and the fact that he had issues with constantly crying (why am I the only one that ever remembers this???) I was done with multiple shots on one visit. One at a time, that was it. I couldn't stand how hysterical he was after leaving the doctors...and he would draw it out, for weeks.

Fast forward some more...we have Victoria...she thankfully didn't go to the NICU. Healthy. We get to take her home. They want to stick her before we leave the hospital...WHAT??? She is 24 hours old and you want to do what? Oh, and the list for vaccines has increased. They now *need* the roto virus. So needless to say, if you or whomever is taking care of your child has fecal material on your or their hands and you don't wash them before sticking them in your infants mouth, they may get sick. But they have a vaccine to take care of that for you, so thankfully we can now skip hand washing after using the toilet. V is almost 9 months old, and she has had 2 vaccines. Actually, 2 shots in a series of 3. I am supposed to bring her in every few weeks to get all of hers done, but I just can't bring myself to do it.

My pediatrician secretly hates vaccines. He would kill me if I outed him, so I won't (your welcome Dr. D!) but he dislikes the flu vaccine (he doesn't get it for himself and doesn't recommend it) and thinks the chicken pox vaccine and the rotovirus vaccines are for convenience only. Just so your kid doesn't get sick and you have to take a week off work. Nice.

So what is your take on this whole thing? I would be interested to hear what parents that have children with autism think of the vaccines. Do you vaccinate? If you do, do you get them all at one time like the AAP suggests?

1 comment:

Ellen said...

We've actually not been very careful about this—we just let the pediatrician do his thing. Sabrina just got 3 shots for her fourth birthday, afterward I did feel terrible. She howled.