Tuesday, November 03, 2009

To Vaccinate or Not Vaccinate? That is the Question. What is the Answer?


As I drove along the winding back roads to the doctor's office this morning, a tiny part of me was still on the fence about whether or not I should get Little One vaccinated for H1N1. I've been bombarded with so much conflicting information and there are so many arguments for and against getting the H1N1 vaccine.

Little One's Neonatolist and family doctor strongly suggested that she get vaccinated. Because she's a preemie, her immune system is not as developed as a term baby's and the fact that she's a preemie automatically puts her in the high risk category.

I think my biggest problem is having access to so much information online. I've spoken to my doctor, I've spoken to friends who are nurses, and they've all said to get the vaccine. Some of my friends (two of them happen to be nurses as well) have opted to not get themselves and their kids vaccinated. They said that they are worried about not knowing what the future side effects will be, the vaccine hasn't been tested long enough, it's still new, the vaccine can attack our autoimmune system, who knows what exactly it is that we are injecting into our bodies, etc.

In the end, Hubby and I decided that having Little One vaccinated is the best decision for our family. We still have to wait until all the high risk patients have received the vaccine before we get ours. For us, the risks of what may happen if we get vaccinated don't outweigh the risks of dying from H1N1. Plus, it made me feel a lot better knowing that the doctor who vaccinated Little One this morning also got vaccinated. I don't think that she would have gotten vaccinated herself if she thought that the vaccine was harmful.

I guess the only answer to the question everyone has been asking is:
It's a very personal decision and I don't think there is a right or wrong answer. Do your research (but make sure your source is a credible source), ask your health unit questions, talk to your family doctor, and whether you believe in vaccinating or not just do what you believe is best for you and your family. Oh, and if you're feeling flu-like symptoms...stay home! :)

10 comments:

louann said...

It's really also a matter of what you really believe in. You just have to be confident about the decision/s you make for your family.

Patti McK said...

Good advice! I think I'm going to opt out of getting my family vaccinated. I'll just do more thorough disinfecting of my home more regularly, and we really don't go anywhere to be exposed to bugs anyway.

Debbie said...

I hope it goes well. I personally trust it for my family. That helps me considerably with the decision.

robert said...

Makes one glad to read that you do hear your own voice and react accordingly.

All the very best for you all.

C said...

Louann:
Yes, that is so true! I totally agree with you.

One of my aunts will be the first to tell you that she does not believe in any kind of flu vaccination. She doesn't get the seasonal flu shot and believes that we need to let our immune systems fight things off naturally. She told me "eat healthy, make sure you eat vitamin rich foods, exercise, wash hands, and do things to try to be as healthy as you can and you should be fine". While I agree with all of that, I still got LO vaccinated because although she is healthy, she is a preemie and her immune system may not be up to par should she get hit with something like H1N1.

Being confident about decisions one makes for one's family is a much more difficult thing than I had ever expected. *sigh*

C said...

Patti:
I hear you on the "we really don't go anywhere to be exposed to bugs anyway" part! I've stopped taking LO to playgroup and Toy Library. What I have been doing is having play dates at our house or at friends' houses. Less kids and I am in control of the environment in that I know the toys are washed and get disinfected and the moms and I know that if anyone is sick then it's a no brainer that they don't come.

I took LO to church on Sunday, and I feel badly for thinking that I don't really want to take her this winter just because she can get exposed to bugs being in such a confined area. Maybe I'm being overly cautious or overly protective, but that's how I feel and as her mom, it's my right. Right? LOL! xoxo

C said...

Debbie:
Good to know! Has your family been vaccinated already? Right now where I live, they're only doing the high risk patients. That includes children 6 months +, pregnant women and people with medical conditions (asthma, diabetes, etc). By mid December, apparently all Canadians who want the shot should be able to get it. How about in the States?

C said...

Robert:
Thank you!!! :)

Karen MEG said...

Yeah, I think it's a very personal decision, but it really bugs me that there are so many radicals who are so anti-vaccination, conspiracy theorists etc...we're a pro vaccine family... the biggest thing is, though, figuring out how to wade through the lineups. The girlie is the only one who is 1st priority though ... that being said, they've been sick, and who knows if this is actually THE virus. It may be a moot point.

Hope you're well, C. Fun stuff, being a parent, isn't it ;)!

C said...

Karen:
TOTALLY agree with you! Well said, sista! :)

Hope the kidlets feel better soon! XOXO

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City girl moves to the country, falls in love, and marries a farmer. She tries to incorporate her city ways with her new country lifestyle and blogs to keep in touch with friends, family & students who live far, far away :) Can this city girl go country? Watch as she learns all sorts of exciting things about life on the farm and in a small rural community. *UPDATE* We are now parents! Our baby girl was born on Nov. 11, 2008 (at 28 weeks gestation- 12 weeks premature, but she's quite the trooper)!!!
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